By James Muonwa, Mashonaland West Correspondent
NOTORIOUS Zanu PF member and businessman, Mike Mhangura, has been sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for raping a Chinhoyi woman last December.
He will, however, spend an effective nine years in jail after regional magistrate, Ignatius Mugova, conditionally suspended three years.
Mhangura was convicted of raping a 38-year-old married woman whom he had offered a lift from the burial of a deceased party member.
The convict, from Gadzema township, Chinhoyi, owns several properties he inherited from his late mother, and is also a Chinhoyi Stars Football Club board member.
The complainant lives in Mapako Phase 1, Chinhoyi.
The state’s case, led by prosecutor Nyasha Sibesha, was that on November 25, 2021, around 6pm, Mhangura and his friends attended the same funeral as the complainant.
The court heard that following the burial proceedings held at Chemagamba Cemetery, he offered the woman a lift back to the deceased’s house in Mzari Suburb.
Mhangura then allegedly drove towards the industrial area and went to Down Town Liquor Wholesale, where his friends bought alcohol and proceeded to Zanu PF Makonde District coordinating committee (DCC) vice chairman, Tapera Mutovido’s residence, where the funeral wake of his late wife was being held.
After dropping off his friends, Mhangura convinced the woman he would pass through her house enroute to Orange Groove Police Camp, where he was headed to.
He, however, diverted the route and started driving around with the woman until they reached Zuva Fuel Station, situated in the industrial area, where he assaulted her with open hands on her face several times, accusing her of refusing to disclose her name.
Mhangura then drove to Hillside, parked the vehicle at his shop and raped her once.
He then threatened the complainant with death, saying she had no power over him since he was a powerful politician.
The court also heard Mhangura ordered his victim not to shave her pubic hair, and not to have a love affair with another man.
The following morning, Mhangura went to the woman’s residence and had a brief conversation with her, which she managed to record on her cell phone.
Complainant disclosed her ordeal to her husband, children, nieces, and friends through audio recordings she posted on WhatsApp.
The matter was reported to ZRP Chemagamba, leading to Mhangura’s arrest.