Mike Harris Chiyangwa, son of the late Harare businessman Jimmy “Jimalo” Chiyangwa, appeared in court yesterday facing fraud allegations involving $33 000 after a botched money transfer scam
Allegations are that on October 10 last year, he called the complainant, Peace Murimba, a commodity broker, and identified himself as Evans Mafirakureva.
It is alleged he then misrepresented to Murimba that he was in possession of 200 000 rand which was in South Africa and was looking for someone to exchange with an equivalent amount in United States dollars in Zimbabwe.
The State alleges Murimba advised Chiyangwa that he would think about the deal later. Later in the day, Chiyangwa’s alleged accomplice, only identified as Tony, called Murimba using a South African number and told him that he was ready to deposit 200 000 rand into a willing taker’s account.
On October 12, Murimba then approached Stephen Makuwa, an administration manager with Nemchem (Pvt) Ltd Zimbabwe, which is into the business of producing and supplying chemicals with a view to supply them with raw materials.
Basing on the business relationship Murimba had with Nemchem, Makuwa allegedly agreed to pre-finance the transaction and transferred $37 142 into Murimba’s bank account.
It is alleged Murimba then called one Tony and instructed him to deposit 200 000 rand into the STR Agencies’ Standard Chartered Bank account in South Africa. Murimba allegedly advised “Mafirakureva”and Tony that the funds would be released upon confirmation of deposit slips.
The State alleges on October 13, Murimba received a call from Tony who told him that he had deposited 200 000 rand in the stated Standard Chartered bank account in South Africa and he went on to receive a fax of the purported copy of the deposit slip.
It is alleged Murimba then met Chiyangwa on October 15 at Jameson Hotel in the capital where he handed over $31 000 in cash and transferred a total of $1 888 in two mobile money accounts.
On October 20, Murimba received a phone call from STR Agencies in South Africa to the effect that the deposited cheques had been dishonoured by their bank and as a result Murimba enquired from Chiyangwa and Tony, who became evasive which prompted him to report the matter to the police.
Murimba is alleged to have suffered a total prejudice of $33 000 and nothing was recovered.
Chiyangwa was yesterday granted $150 bail and remanded to July 3 by magistrate Josephine Sande.