$12 000 bribe sees cop arrested
A POLICE officer stationed in Victoria Falls has been arrested after he allegedly demanded a $12 000 bribe from a suspected gold dealer who he had caught attempting to smuggle two kilogrammes of processed gold.
It could not be readily established where the gold worth $110 000 was destined, as the illegal dealer Fungai Chipunza’s whereabouts are not known.
Sergeant Masare Sungano, whose age wasn’t given, is attached to the Minerals and Border Control Unit.
It is alleged Sgt Sungano was deployed at the Victoria Falls Border Post on September 13 when he intercepted Chipunza who was in possession of gold and instead of arresting him, he allegedly demanded $12 000 so he could facilitate his free passage.
Victoria Falls magistrate Ms Rangarirai Gakanje did not ask Sgt Sungano to plead to criminal abuse of office as a public officer on Tuesday.
She remanded him out of custody on $200 bail to next week Thursday.
As part of his bail conditions, Ms Gakanje ordered Sgt Sungano to reside at Victoria Falls Police Camp, surrender travel documents to the Clerk of Court, not to interfere with witnesses and report to the police once a week every Friday until the matter is finalised.
State counsel, Mr Listen Nare was opposed to bail after the investigating officer Assistant Inspector Wellington Chinadada said he was yet to record statements from witnesses, some of them local while others are believed to be in South Africa.
It is alleged that police received a tip-off from members of the public.
“On September 13, the accused was deployed at Victoria Falls Border Post where he was supposed to work between 6AM and 10PM to monitor criminal activities,” said the prosecutor.
It is alleged that between the border and Ilala Lodge, Sgt Sungano met Chipunza who was in possession of gold.
Instead of arresting him, the accused allegedly solicited for $12 000.
Sgt Sungano allegedly threatened to arrest Chipunza if he failed to pay.
The cop was arrested after being found in possession of the processed mineral.
The gold, worth about $110 000, was taken to Bulawayo for testing to confirm its purity and actual value.— @ncubeleon.
A combine harvester works on a 150 hectare wheat field at ARDA’s Jotsholo Estate recently. The Estate which was visited by the Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa when wheat was still in infancy is under the Food and Nutrition cluster of Zim-Asset ( Picture by Eliah Saushoma)