By Mary Taruvinga
SOUTH African drug mule, Shila Khumalo, has been slapped with 12- year imprisonment for unlawful possession of cocaine.
Khumalo was convicted in May by chief magistrate Munamato Mutevedzi.
She will however serve 10 years effective after two years of her sentence were suspended on condition of good behaviour.
The drug peddler fainted when her sentence was read out on Tuesday.
Khumalo was arrested in May this year after she was caught with a contraband of cocaine valued at $7,8 million.
She had swallowed 60 plastic balls of the drug and at the time of her conviction the state was waiting for her to excrete some of the balls left in her intestines.
They had retrieved 58 plastic balls containing cocaine from her excreta.
Prosecutors proved that on May 9 information was received to the effect that Khumalo was coming to Zimbabwe from Brazil with contraband of cocaine aboard an Ethiopian Airways.
She was expected to arrive at the Robert Mugabe International Airport the following day.
On May 10, acting on the information, a team of detectives from CID drugs and Narcotics Harare, operatives from the Central Intelligence Organisation and personnel from Zimbabwe Revenue Authority who were manning the arrival section at the airport intercepted her.
A search was conducted on her luggage and on her person leading to the recovery of 53 small white balls with whitish powder inside stashed in a pair of black socks in her undergarment which she was wearing.
A field test of whitish powder was conducted in the presence of her at the airport and it tested positive to cocaine.
It was further discovered that she had ingested 60 plastic balls of cocaine.