Cop up for swindling 104 motorists

HARARE - A cop attached to Avondale Police Traffic Section is answering to 104 counts of fraud and abuse of office after he reportedly cashed-in on motorists’ fines using a fake receipt book, a court heard.

Claudius Mazvimba, 35, appeared before Harare magistrate Francis Mapfumo for trial but would not respond when questions were posed to him after indicating that he would exercise his right to remain silent.

Prosecutor Michael Reza read out all 103 counts of fraud to Mazvimba and another for criminal abuse of office but the police officer did not utter a word.

The court recorded that Mazvimba had pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Mapfumo had directed that the trial commences in the absence of Mazvimba’s lawyer because the matter has been postponed more than four times.

“When you appeared in court on July 2 you were advised by the court that it was the last time the matter would be postponed considering that you have thwarted every chance of trial commencement and this matter is continuously winding,” Mapfumo ruled.

However, Mazvimba said he would not respond in the absence of his lawyer.

Reza led evidence from detective assistant inspector Thomas Mabgwe.

“I teamed up with another detective Makombe and went to Avondale Police Station. I found out that Mazvimba and four other accomplices were using the pink triplicate copy for their authorities to close dockets unknowingly,” Mabgwe said.

“We went to retrieve all the dockets that were filed and had a fake copy attached.

“We also retrieved filed Z69 (J) books which had the same serial numbers with the fake copies.”

The State has lined up witnesses that were reportedly duped by the duo including Harare lawyer Jonathan Samukange to testify.

The total value of prejudice has not been established yet.

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