Prosecutor in Rushwaya’s gold smuggling case convicted of fraud after demanding US$20k bribe

Henrietta Rushwaya
Spread the love

HARARE – Pardon Dziva, the prosecutor in the high-profile gold smuggling case involving Zimbabwe Miners Federation president Henrietta Rushwaya, has been convicted of fraud by the Harare Magistrates Court.

Dziva, along with his accomplice Alex Tombe, was found guilty of demanding a US$20,000 bribe from Rushwaya to secure a lighter sentence for her.

Rushwaya was arrested in 2020 at the Robert Mugabe International Airport while attempting to smuggle gold bars weighing 6 kilograms to Dubai. In 2023, she was convicted and fined US$5,000, with an 18-month jail term wholly suspended. The gold, valued at US$330,000, was confiscated by the state.

The prosecution revealed that Henrietta Rushwaya’s sister, Helliate, tipped off the Zimbabwe Republic Police Anti-Corruption Unit (ZACC) after learning of Dziva’s bribe demand.

“It is the State’s case that on the 15th of November 2023, the first accused person demanded US$20,000 from Wellington Takavarasha to facilitate a lighter sentence for Henrietta Rushwaya, who had been convicted of smuggling by a Harare High Court Judge,” stated the National Prosecuting Authority.

Wellington Takavarasha informed Helliate Rushwaya of the bribe demand, prompting her to report the matter to ZACC. The authorities then set up a sting operation.

Helliate Rushwaya agreed to meet Dziva and Tombe at CABS Centre, where Tombe approached her, claiming to be sent by Dziva to collect the money. Helliate insisted on handing the money directly to Dziva. They then drove to Kebbab Restaurant in Milton Park, where Dziva met Helliate in her vehicle and received the trap money. Both men were subsequently arrested.

Dziva and Tombe are scheduled to return to court on June 4, 2024, for their pre-sentencing hearing.