Ginimbi cleared in gas importation, lifestyle scandal

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By Mary Taruvinga

BUSINESSMAN and socialite, Genius Kadungure has been acquitted in a case in which he was being accused of failing to declare income returns to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) while prejudicing the Commissioner of Taxes of millions of United States dollars.

Harare magistrate Crispen Mberewere Friday ruled that Kadungure, better known as Ginimbi, and his company, Piko Trading operating as Pioneer Gases did not commit any offence adding the state failed to prove its case beyond any reasonable doubt.

Kadungure was accused of failing to declare income returns as well as failing to account for his lavish lifestyle between 2010 and 2012 when ZIMRA undertook a lifestyle audit on him.

Piko Trading was charged for smuggling 5 289kg of gas into the country.

State witness, Adrian Maudzeni had told the court that although Kadungure paid US$30 000 in January this year and an additional US$5 000 into the ZIMRA account towards repaying the amount he allegedly prejudiced the tax collector, he was still liable to answering to charges of failing to make the declaration.

Allegations were that between February 2009 and May 2016, Kadungure made misrepresentations to ZIMRA that his company Pioneer Gases made total sales of US$2 777 678,13 although the total was US$9 092 951,51.

Court heard that Kadungure made the misrepresentation to avoid paying tax and ZIMRA was prejudiced US$417 940, 58.

The offence came to light when ZIMRA investigated the operations of Pioneer Gases and carried out a lifestyle audit on Kadungure.

On March 2, 2016, Kadungure told ZIMRA investigators that he owned a Domboshava residential property valued at US$200 000, a Rolls Royce, Bentley Range Rover, a Mercedes-Benz S Class and BMW motor vehicles.

ZIMRA investigators asked Kadungure to prove the source of his income, but he failed to do so, leading to his arrest.

Between January 2010 and December 2015, Kadungure did not declare sales made by his Pioneer Gases amounting to US$9 092 951.51 and concealed assets valued at US$1 191 713.45.