Prosper Dembedza Court Correspondent
The trial of former Harare magistrate Memory Chigwaza and her three alleged accomplices, who are facing $155 000 fraud charges after they sold non-existent residential stands to unsuspecting home-seekers, failed to start yesterday because the presiding magistrate, Mrs Lucy Mungwari, was transferred to Rusape.
Chigwaza (48), Everson Luni (38), Davison Zvomarima (65) and Michael Kawanzuruwa (age not supplied) are on $200 bail each.
Allegations are that the four hatched a plan to swindle land seekers of their money and by flighting an advertisement in a newspaper offering residential stands under Maizview Projects at Strathaven in Harare, selling at $25 per square metre.
Zvomarima allegedly obtained a fake identity card document in the name of Gabriel Kabanda and was made one of the directors of the purported Topmark Stationers (Pvt) Ltd Company using a fake CR14 document.
The real Topmark directors are Abel Zhuwao and Rumbidzai Mapfumo.
Luni and Kawanzuruwa allegedly hired their agents, Topmark Stationers, and showed them the stands for sale in Strathaven armed with fake title deeds.
The State alleges that on September 27 this year, Mr Sonboy Mapanzure responded to the advertisement and proceeded to Maizview offices in Eastlea, Harare, and transferred $25 000 into a CBZ Bank account.
Thereafter, he was referred to Chigwaza’s offices at Chikore and Chigwaza Law Chambers where an agreement of sale was prepared by Chigwaza, who failed to check the authenticity of the title deeds.
It is alleged Zvomarima presented himself as Kabanda, who was representing Topmark.
The State alleges that on September 26, another complainant, Benjamin Manungo, responded to the same advertisement and paid $40 000.
On October 3, Manungo paid another $5 000 and an agreement of sale was again prepared by Chigwaza.
As a result, he lost $45 000 and nothing was recovered.
It is further alleged that on October 4, third complainant Peter Manyoni responded to the advert and paid $55 000 through a transfer into Maizview Projects’ bank account.
Chigwaza allegedly prepared the agreement of sale.
On October 5, fourth complainant, Jacob Kasumba, paid $25 000 and nothing was recovered.
The State alleges the accused persons received the money and entered into agreements of sale with the complainants using fake title deeds.
The four are being represented by Mr Charles Chikore.