By Shingirai Vambe
A United Kingdom based, Vanessa Cooke is alleged to have lost a fortune in a property sale belonging to Mr. Edward Mekia Maziofa of 2900 infill Rusape.
Cooke who is being represented by Tendai Robson Mandivheyi reported the matter to Rusape Police Station, three months ago and a fraud docket was opened under RRB 5156633.
The matter was also reported to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) after the complainant felt the state was and is protecting Maziofa, the accused person on the alleged matter.
Represented by Leonard Chigadza of Chigadza and Associates, Maziofa is being charged of fraud as defined in Section 136 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23, for selling a property he knew he had leased for a year to another tenant, Phillip Matibe through Pavia Real Estate Agency.
It is the state’s case that Maziofa misrepresented to Cooke that he was selling his unoccupied residential property at number 704 Jacaranda Drive, Castle Base, Rusape Township valued at US$60,000 to which Cooke paid US$40 000 deposit and the balance to have been settled on the 15th of September 2022.
After the deposit was paid it was agreed that Cooke’s attorney Mandivheyi was supposed to collect keys for the property from one Chigadza, but instead failed until he decided to physically go to the house in question where he then discovered there was a tenant living in the house. A police report was then filed against Maziofa at Rusape police Station.
Maziofa is alleged to have blocked Cooke’s number so that she could not communicate or look for him, while the police also claimed the accused was not reachable. The complainant flew into the country for two and half weeks but could neither get the keys from Chigadza nor see Maziofa, even as she presented herself to the police in Rusape.
It has come to the attention of this publication that the investigating officer constable Mhepo told the complainant that the accused person was in Chivhu and that the police had no resources to go and make an arrest. Mhepo demanded money for logistics and a sum of US$80 was sent through World Remit.
Post On Sunday is in possession of the original agreement of sale signed by Maziofa, who however upon his arrest denied to have signed it claiming that he would only sign it after settlement of the outstanding US$20,000 balance was paid in full.
Constable Mhepo then lied through a text message to Cooke that the court had dismissed the matter as there was no fraud case to answer but when Mandivheyi went to the same Court only to find out that it was not true.
The complainant has since reported the matter to ZACC after further suspicion of dubious handling by Rusape police after a CID officer is alleged to have told Mandivheyi that, Maziofa was busy and would only come for court procedures when free.
According to the state outline, “the accused person’s actions prejudiced complainant of her occupation of the house and he (Maziofa) had no lawful right to act in the manner he did.” The matter was remanded to 21 October 2022.
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