Police bust Forbes border chrome smuggling

Abel Zhakata Senior Reporter
A ZIMRA official and two truck drivers were on Tuesday night arrested at Forbes Border Post in Mutare after alert detectives patrolling the exit point intercepted two haulage trucks laden with chrome that had been fraudulently cleared to cross into Mozambique.

The value of the mineral is yet to be ascertained.

Wilfred Dandajena, a Zimra official is facing criminal abuse of duty charges for fraudulently clearing the two trucks while the two drivers Cosmas Denga (54) and Harrison Neweyembwa (54), all from Harare and employed by Albritim Enterprises, are facing charges of contravening the MMCZ Act which criminalises the exportation of mineral without clearance.

Officer Commanding Manicaland Police Senior Assistant Commissioner Wiklef Makamache confirmed the case. He said police had long received a tip off about the two trucks from their colleagues in Chinhoyi.

“I don’t have the full report of what transpired with me here but what I can tell you is that we received a tip off from our colleagues in Chinhoyi concerning the two trucks. So they were under surveillance,” he said.

Manicaland deputy police spokesman Assistant Inspector Luxon Chananda said the Zimra official is suspected of fraudulently clearing the haulage trucks using forged papers.

“Our officers with the Minerals, Flora and Fauna Unit received a tip off concerning the two trucks which were loaded with chrome from Guruve. The two trucks which had finished doing all the immigration and Zimra procedures were intercepted by detectives on their way to the exit point. The police officers noted that the two trucks did not have valid documents resulting in the arrest of the two drivers.

“The Zimra official who did the clearance procedure was also arrested for fraudulently discharging his duties by clearing the two trucks,” he said.

They were expected to appear in court today (Friday).