By Court Reporter
A Harare prophet recently lost $16 000 in both cash and property to three police officers who allegedly forced him to admit to a charge of fraud so that he could give away his money and car to buy his freedom.
The three police officers are Reginald Musuma (31), Samson Tazviwana (27) and Benjamin Chivasa aged 30.
They appeared before Harare magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa and were remanded in custody pending their bail ruling set to be handed down this Wednesday.
They are facing criminal abuse of office charges as well as theft.
Prosecuting, Ropafadzo Bostch alleged that the incident occurred on August 17 this year.
This is after one Lorraine Mhaka had tried to file a police report of fraud against the prophet Tsungai Makumbe at Harare central police station.
The police officers did not take down the report but instead, went to Marimba Park suburb where they found Makumbe praying at his shrine.
They then arrested him and took him to Harare Central police while driving in his car, a Jeep Cherokee.
When they arrived at the station, they parked the car outside the gate and dragged him inside the building.
Court heard they went on to demand US$4000 from Makumbe in order to release him.
They then released him after he had paid the money.
However, checks were later made by the police officers’ superiors who discovered that the initial complaint against the prophet by Mhaka was not properly recorded.
To cover up their offence, the three instructed Mhaka to make another report at the same station.
It is further alleged that on the same day, around 4:30 pm and in connivance with Mhaka, the officers forced Makumbe to admit to a charge of fraud through surrendering his car which was still outside the police station.
Makumbe, under duress, court heard, then wrote an affidavit purportedly ceding his vehicle as surety to Mhaka who had reported a case against him.
The car was worth $12 000.
As a result, he lost $16 000 and nothing was recovered.