Woman defrauds four of $240 000

HARARE - A Harare woman who swindled four people of over $200 000 after luring them into investing in her unregistered microfinance company is set to stand trial on January 16 next year.

Alice Maja, 44, is appearing at the Harare Magistrates’ Court on fraud charges.

She allegedly defrauded Silven Chisewe, Syvern Investments director, Kudzai Chisewe, a World Health Organisation employee based in India, Julius Musara and Runyararo Tafadzwa Chisewe, who are both unemployed.

The court heard Maja first approached her friend Silven in July last year and told her she was running a microfinance company called Home Beautiful.

Maja allegedly told Silven that she needed financial support.

It is alleged Silven then gave Maja $16 640 in February this year.

Maja advised her that the amount attracted a 12 percent interest every month.

Silven later gave Maja a further $100 000 in May under the same conditions.

The court heard Maja became elusive when Silven approached her intending to withdraw money and the interests accumulated through the investment.

It is alleged Maja, using the same tactic, received $91 590 from Kudzai, $5 300 from Runyararo and $35 100 from Musara, between February and May this year.

According to state papers, investigations carried out revealed that Home Beautiful was not a registered microfinance company.

It was also discovered that Maja did not invest the money that she received from the four complainants.

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