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ZACC arrests suspects over missing exhibits from police custody

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ZACC arrests suspects over missing exhibits from police custody



HARARE-The Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) arrested Wayne Williams and Regis Maburutse (CRB2222-3/24) yesterday at Yagden Engineering Pvt Limited premises over missing thirty-Five motorbikes seized as exhibits by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Criminal Investigations Department (CID) with a selling value of US$87 500 that disappeared from their custody.
This was after frantic efforts by Sarpo to engage the police to act on the matter hit a brick wall. He, however, made a formal complaint with the Police citing the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act, [9:07] Section 58A (1) which stipulates that the exhibits should be returned to the owner within 21 working days from the date of seizure, but the police allegedly showed no interest in the matter. He was left with no choice but to approach ZACC.
Williams and Maburutse has since appeared before Harare Magistrate Dennis Mangosi who remanded them out of custody to April 4, 2024 on $100 each. Prosecutor Thomas Chinakira told the court that 35 motorbikes belonging to Chiredzi farmer Tony Renato Sarpo were seized in 2017 after his partners at Yagden Engineering Pvt Limited, Williams and Maburutse reported him for theft of trust property
The bikes were seized by CID Harare Commercial Crimes Division and instead of being kept at the Police Station, they were kept at a Yagden warehouse in Chiredzi after the company’s Loss Control manager Solomon Mateta signed an indemnity form. Williams claimed he gave Sarpo US$150 000 from the company but diverted the motorbikes to personal use. Harare Resident Magistrate Ruramai Chitumbura acquitted Sarpo of the charges in March 2023, after he produced the Customs Clearance Certificate for the motorbike kits. They showed that they were imported for US$64 443, not US$150 000, as claimed by Williams.
She issued a grant order for the motorbikes to be released to Sarpo.
Part of her order, dated May 4, 2023, reads: “RE: Release of exhibits State vs Tony Renato Sarpo CRB HREP4035/17. In respect of the 3rd count the accused was found not guilty and acquitted therefore the 35 unassembled motorbikes are to be returned to the accused person.”
When Sarpo went to CCD to ask for assistance to retrieve the exhibits back into his care, they were not there. It is alleged the motorbikes were disposed of during the trial while they were still State exhibits.

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