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US fugitive dragged to Zimbabwe court

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HARARE – A fugitive from American justice, who entered Zimbabwe in 2009 before allegedly committing a series of offences, appeared in court yesterday.

Carlton Sloan Bridges alias Brandon Lee Jones, 47, appeared before Harare magistrate Josephine Sande charged with four counts of contravening the National Registration Act by forging an identity document.

He was represented by Admire Rubaya and will be back in court today for his bail ruling.

Prosecutor Tatenda Murindagomo alleged that on July 13, 2010, Bridges obtained a birth certificate under entry number SBY 1040/71 using an American birth record issued in Georgia, indicating that he was born on June 25, 1970.

It was alleged that Bridges obtained the birth certificate after indicating that all his parents were Zimbabwean — and to regularise acquiring citizenship.

He allegedly went on to obtain a Zimbabwean national identity document in the name Brandon Lee Jones purporting that it had been issued by the registrar general’s office in Chinhoyi.

On December 14, 2011, Bridges fraudulently obtained another national identity document 13-023672-P-00 in the name Carlton Sloan Bridges.

It was later established that the registration identity number 13-023672-P-00 belongs to Mtisi Lilli, a female Zimbabwean national born on October 10, 1953 in Mashevedze Village under Chief Mapungwana in Chipinge.

On August 16, 2012, Bridges proceeded to the registrar general’s office in Bindura and used the forged documents to acquire a Zimbabwean passport and travelled to different countries.