Witnesses give evidence in $20m Econet fraud

Ellen Mlambo
Chipinge Times Editor

CHIPINGE – Three witnesses, two money changers and an Econet worker, all based at Mutoko gave evidence on Thursday in the trial of four Chipinge Econet Wireless employees arrested on allegations of siphoning $20m from their employer.

The trial is going on at Chipinge before Regional Magistrate Christopher Maturure.

Mukai Maringe Mapanzure who is suspected to be the mastermind of the multimillion dollar fraud was a sales consultant at Econet Chipinge.

It is the State case that the four Econet employees defrauded their employer of RTGS $20 384 475 using fictitious ecocash lines. They deposited the money with money vendors who used the ecocash to buy foreign currency on the black market which was surrendered to the four.

The crime was committed early this year.

The other three suspects are Gavin Tinashe Guwu, Tshando Madhava and Trymore Chimoyo (brand ambassador Checheche).
The three witness from Mutoko all told the magistrate that they had ecocash transactions with Guwu. They said that Guwu deposited ecocash into their lines and they bought foreign currency on the black market which they surrendered to Guwu.
The witnesses are Andrew Nyamashuku and Costa Nyamutemera who are vendors and the third, Obert Manheru is a sales consultant for Econet in Mutoko.

Nyamashuku said Guwu told him that he was no longer employed with Econet but was now a money changer in Harare. Guwu asked to send Nyamashuku ecocash so that he would buy him foreign currency on the black market.

“I made more than three transactions with Guwu. This ended when Police came in the company of an Econet employee from Mutoko to investigate a line in the name of Nyachidze Primary that was sending cash to me,” said Nyamashuku.

The suspects were remanded out of custody to January 21, 2021 for continuation of trial.

Nyamutemera also confirmed that he made transactions with Guwu and mentioned two agent lines that were used in the names of Nyachidze Primary and Ngondonga enterprises.

Manheru said he received ecocash money equivalent to US$600 and US$400 in two separate transactions from Guwu who used the Nyachidze Primary registered line.

Mapanzure and Madhava are represented by TK Takaindisa Law Chambers. Guwu is represented by Nyawo Ruzive Attorneys and Chimoyo is represented by Mhungu of Mhungu and Associates. https://masvingomirror.com

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