Fake EcoCash messages used to swindle tyre trader

HARARE - A Blue Circle Bus Company employee reportedly manufactured fake EcoCash payment messages and used them to swindles a tyre trade of $58 000 worth of goods, a court heard.

Modern Nyika, 47, was charged with fraud when he appeared before Harare magistrate, Rumbidzayi Mugwagwa.

The State had opposed bail arguing that Nyika would flee jurisdiction since he was caught with some of the stolen property.

However, Mugwagwa released him on $500 bail and ordered him not to interfere with witnesses, reside at the given address and report every Friday at Glen Norah Police Station.

The case was remanded to October 2.

Between August 16 and 23 this year Nyika connived with one Mike and hatched a plan to steal from Tineo Enterprises, trading as Infinity Tyres at 34 Kelvin Road, Graniteside, Harare.

The court heard that Nyika and his accomplice then created fake EcoCash transactions messages, which they forwarded to the company’s merchant code purporting that it had been created from Econet.

It was alleged that using the manufactured EcoCash messages, Nyika would approach Infinity Tyres and purchase tyres using cellphone communication.

Acting on the misrepresentation, Nyika’s order would be processed by Infinity on the pretext that the EcoCash messages resembled genuine payments.

Nyika would allegedly hire motor vehicles to collect the tyres from Infinity Tyres once the fraudulent payments would have been processed.

The tyres were sent to Nyika and his accomplice’s residents.

The court head that when the matter came to light Nyika led police to recovery of 13 of the tyres which he hid at Blue Circle garage.

As a result of the manipulated EcoCash message Infinity lost $58 000 and property worth $7 000 was recovered.

Drivers of the cars that were hired to transport the stolen goods are willing to testify against Nyika during the trial.

The recovered tyres were positively identified by the owners through matching serial numbers.

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