Cops in court for extorting ministry director

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By Paul Katanda

TWO Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers are in trouble after they allegedly extorted US$200 from Information and Communications Technology director Beaulah Chirume.

The two, Sinikiwe Phiri (36) and Pirate Mazarire (38) are being charged along with their accomplices, Cleopas Matamba (40) and Passmore Tsodzo (46) who impersonated police officers in committing the alleged crime.

The quartet appeared before Harare magistrate Yeukai Dzuda and were not asked to plead.

Their bail hearing is still pending as the state is still investigating if they have previous cases.

According to court papers, on April 6 Chirume was driving along 7th street from Sam Levy where she was coming to withdraw money when she realised that she was being followed by a Toyota Wish.

Out of fear she drove to a nearby furniture shop.

Before she could leave her car, she was approached by Matamba who identified himself as a member of the Central Intelligence Organization (CIO) and allegedly told her that he was going to arrest her for crossing a red traffic light at State House.

Phiri joined Matamba in the car and they allegedly started threatening her telling her that they were going to arrest her if she failed to give them US$300.

They then took her to their own car to meet their other accomplices whom they claimed to be their superiors referring to Tsodzo and Mazarire.

They took her back to her own car where they demanded cash and she gave them US$175 but they were not satisfied which allegedly made them search her wallet, taking US$17 and ZW$200.

They allegedly ordered her to drive her car due west along Samora Machel.

Before she could cross Fifth street, they ordered her to stop then they entered into their getaway car which was following behind.