Ex-MDC MP jailed 2 years over $95 000 fraud

HARARE - Former Buhera South MDC legislator, Tangwara Matimba, has been jailed for an effective two years after he was found guilty of $95 000 fraud.

Harare regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya sentenced Matimba to seven years imprisonment before suspending two years on condition of good behaviour. Another three years were suspended on condition Matimba restitutes the complainant $95 000 by March 7 this year.

Mujaya considered that Matimba was a family man but faced a serious offence because “he did not act in need but greed”.

“The amount involved is very high and accused person did not act in need but greed. I have considered that accused is a first time offender aged 46 and is a family man”, he said. Prosecutor Michael Reza said Matimba, who is owner of Property Hopes Real Estate, had put the name of the estate agency into disrepute.

“The accused person’s moral blameworthiness is very high considering that he was a former Member of Parliament. He has brought into disrepute the profession of estate agents,” he said. Matimba denied the allegations arguing everything he did was approved by the complainant, Liberty Madzingira, who is based in the US.

The accused implied property owners had approved the sale and agreed he could get buyers who could pay between $80 000 and $90 000.

“We told the person who owned the house, Brian Mafirambudzi, about the sale and he approved $70 000 in instalments but complainant’s brother Jimias refused to accept the money and said he had settled for $95 000 not $70 000”, he said.

Matimba said his company kept the $70 000 while he sourced the $25 000 balance. Jimias said he only knew that his brother’s house had been sold after confronting Mafirambudzi because he stopped paying rentals.

Mafirambudzi told the court he bought the house for $95 000 from Matimba.   
    
Receipts produced in court showed Mafirambudzi paid $95 000 and not $70 000 as claimed by Matimba.

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