Ginimbi acquitted in R1m fraud rap

HARARE - Flamboyant businessman and socialite Genius Kadungure was yesterday acquitted of fraud in a matter he was accused of duping Chegutu West Zanu PF legislator Dexter Nduna of more than R1 million.

Ginimbi, as he is popularly known, allegedly also duped Kwekwe-based brothers Enock and Evon Gatawa. He had protested his innocence and pleaded not guilty to the two counts of fraud.

In acquitting Ginimbi, Harare Magistrate Morgan Nemadire said there is no evidence directly linking Kadungure to the offence and that the State failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt.

Nemadire said there is no rational connection between Kadungure and the prejudiced victims and that there was no evidence he connived with one Blessing Mashaya in South Africa to commit the offence.

The magistrate castigated the State for going on a witch hunting mission without tangible evidence against the energy trader.

“It looks like the prosecution undertook some fishing expedition when they hauled Kadungure and his former co-accused Wicknell Chivayo before the court hoping that along the way the co-accused would convict themselves,” Nemadire said.

Chivayo was acquitted at the close of the State’s case.

When Chivayo was acquitted, Ginimbi was ordered to be put to his defence to answer why he initiated contact with Nduna and Gatawa and why he subsequently reimbursed the former $50 000.

In his defence, Ginimbi told the court that he contacted Gatawa to team up and find the person who committed the fraud.

He also said he needed to guard against the erosion of his personal and business image hence he felt compelled to reimburse Gatawa.

Ginimbi also questioned why he was being prosecuted in Zimbabwe for the offence when the actual perpetrators were dealt with in South Africa and Gatawa was paid back all his money.

Nemadire said the explanation given by Ginimbi in defence was plausible and is possibly true.

“It is possible the accused wanted to protect his personal and business reputation by engaging Gatawa and make an out-of-court settlement.

“The court established that the accused never spoke to the two victims before and during the transactions and therefore the victims did not act on any misrepresentation,” he said.

Nemadire highlighted that the evidence given by the State’s seven witnesses was immaterial and did not paint Kadungure as a fraudster.

He also noted that the evidence given by the investigating officer Blessing Mandizha contradicted his statement which he issued on September 13, 2016 and was thus not helpful both as a State and defence witness.

However, Nemadire established that the extraterritorial evidence given by Mandizha revealed that the Internet Protocol address used by the unnamed fraudster in committing the offence was based in South Africa.

“In this case, the fraudster was invisible and never to be seen from the time the offence was committed,” Nemadire said.

Meanwhile, Kadungure appeared before another magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa for routine remand in a matter where he is accused of prejudicing the government of $3,5
million in tax.

Mugwagwa remanded the matter to December 11.

Through his lawyer Jonathan Samukange, Kadungure notified the court that he intends to file for the return of his passport on the next remand date.

As part of his bail conditions, Ginimbi was ordered to surrender his passport with the clerk of court.

 

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