'Bribe swallowing' cop acquitted

HARARE – An exhibit officer based at CID Vehicle Theft Squad Southerton Harare who was accused of swallowing $10 bribe money after being busted by a “trap team”  has been acquitted.

Tsingano was being charged with criminal abuse of office but Harare magistrate Josephine Sande noted that  evidence adduced by the State was not convincing for a court to convict her in the circumstances.

She noted that the State’s star witness was also an accomplice in the offence hence his evidence ought to be treated with caution.

The case was subsequently thrown out.

The complainant was the State represented by assistant inspector Stewart Rakabonga of Police General Headquarters Harare (PGHQ).

Tsingano is sorely responsible for booking exhibits and undertaking restoration — a process of regularising car engine or chasis number with the one that appears on the registration book.

According to the State on March 7, Tsingano was at work when Charles Mutama brought his Mazda 626 for change of ownership and it was discovered that the car’s chassis number was not legible.

She reportedly demanded $20 from Mutama for his car not to be impounded and he asked for her phone number to transfer the money via EcoCash.

That same day Mutama advised PGHQ Internal Investigations department about the issue and a trap was set up on March 8.

On March 8, Mutama returned to Tsingano in the company of  trap details and handed over the $10 in two $5 denominations to the cop.