Top cops implicated as brains behind extortion of Chinese businessman

TWO senior police officers were yesterday implicated in an extortion scam by one of the four suspects being accused of extorting $19 900 from a Chinese businessman.

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

Delish Nguwaya, who is being charged together with Mbizo Mbereki Nyathi, Clever Gadzikwa and Vengai Zano, said Police Chief Superintendent Nyaradzai Majachani and Superintendent Shepherd Tachiona were the brains behind the alleged crime.

Nguwaya made the remarks while testifying in court during his application for the matter to be referred to Constitutional Court.

Nguwaya, who is represented by Jonathan Samukange, told the court that the idea to extort the Chinese businessman was allegedly mooted by Tachiona in his office and he shared the loot with Majachani.

“I proceeded to Tachiona’s office, where I found him in the company of Gadzikwa counting money which was on a table and Tachiona was apportioning it,” he said.

“He counted $500, which he gave to me and Tachiona, then told Gadzikwa to give the other officers their portions and he further averred that part of the money was going to be given to Mrs Majachani and Nyathi.”

In his testimony before regional magistrate Themba Kuwanda, Nguwaya said he received a phone call from an informer on June 12 last year telling him that there was a Chinese national who was not banking his daily earnings, ill-treating workers and had employed an expatriate engineer without proper documentation.

Nguwaya said after receiving the information, he passed it to Tachiona, who then assigned Gadzikwa, Zano and two others to go to the Chinese businessman’s factory and carry out investigations.

He said Tachiona later arrived at the factory and pretended not to know them and asked who they were, and Zano then introduced them, saying they were from the Central Intelligence Organisation and had been sent by Nyathi.

Nguwaya said Tachiona then took the Chinese businessman to another room, where he wanted to speak with him in private.

On returning, Nguwaya said, Tachiona told them the businessman had accepted that he had committed a crime and pleaded that there be no investigations.

“Tachiona later emerged from the office holding a khaki envelope and told Gadzikwa that he had been given $5 000, saying he had initially asked for $8 000. Tachiona then surrendered the envelope to Gadzikwa as though he was not interested in it,” Nguwaya continued.

He said they then went to Harare Central Police Station, where they shared the loot with Majachani.

The matter was rolled over to today for continuation.
Michael Reza appeared for the State.