BULAWAYO - A man who extorted cash from companies here masquerading as a Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) official has been arrested.
Naison Kuzamba, 36, of Belleview, put on a Zimra uniform and a name tag while carrying a file which contained customers’ company documents as he engaged in his alleged operation.
Kuzamba was not asked to plead when he appeared before magistrate Tawanda Muchemwa facing seven counts of fraud.
He was remanded in custody to today for bail hearing.
It is the State’s case that on October 29 in 2012, the accused went to Victor Bravo who is the director of Belmont Meat Supplies where he introduced himself as a Zimra official.
He then accused Bravo of owing Zimra thousands of dollars through evasion of value added tax.
Kuzamba, who was using the name Mayo B, told the complainant to settle the payment with him as a way of avoiding a 100 percent penalty.
The complainant told Kuzamba that he only had $2 000.
He took it and promised to come back to collect the balance before the end of the day but he did not.
In the same month, Kuzamba proceeded to Belleview Service Station where he approached its proprietor Stephen Tshuma.
He allegedly told him that he was a Zimra official from Harare and had been assigned to audit local companies since Bulawayo Zimra had been condemned over corruption.
The complainant, however, denied the accused permission to carry out the said audit arguing that his company was under judicial management.
Kuzamba then threatened to shut down the service station if his demands were not met. This forced the complainant to fork out $50 to stop the closure.
The accused, using the same modus operandi, allegedly visited four other companies on different periods which include Trish Boutique, Agri Auctions, Tony Bee Trading and Auto Electrics Techs where he swindled them of varied amounts.
On August 26, police received information that Kuzamba was along Jason Moyo Street allegedly on another mission to swindle another company and dashed to the scene. He was arrested.
The Zimra officer’s uniform and identity card were recovered.
In total, Kuzamba swindled $14 924 between October 2012 and August 2014.