Home » Judicial » Belvedere Maids Acquitted

TWO domestic workers from Belvedere in Harare accused of splashing $700 000 they allegedly stole from their employer on cars and houses were yesterday acquitted, while their colleague was found guilty of theft of the money.Rebecca Kawe (28) of Zengeza 4 and Sheila Nyandoro (30) of Unit K in Chitungwiza were cleared of the charges after Harare magistrate Mr Temba Kuwanda ruled that the evidence led in court was not enough to secure a conviction.

Mr Kuwanda ruled that there was no evidence linking Kawe and Nyandoro to the offence, adding that the police did not carry out comprehensive investigations.

“The only evidence before the court is that accused two and three were buying a lot of household property between May and December 2012,” he said.

“The pair allegedly bought houses in Zengeza, Marlborough and vehicles, but their husbands who are brothers maintained that they sourced the money at Chiadzwa.

“Although the figures they alleged were obtained from selling diamonds could be exaggerated, the court cannot dispute it if there is no evidence proving otherwise.

“It is possible that accused two and three connived with accused one to commit the offence, but the evidence before the court is not conclusive. The court is giving them benefit of the doubt, they are found not guilty and are acquitted.”

But prosecutor Mr Micheal Reza lodged his intention to appeal against the pair’s acquittal. The pair’s colleague, Euna Tsekwete (32) of Shamva, was found guilty after the court established that she led police officers to a field in Madziva near her homestead where $2 000 was hidden.

“The accused later disowned the money saying it was recovered from her handbag and not from a field,” said Mr Kuwanda. “The police officers did not know the accused prior to the arrest, it is the court’s view they had no reason to lie against her.

“Why did she distance herself from the money if it was cleanly obtained and if that was her way of keeping money safe? The accused later accused police offices of sharing the money, yet it was later produced in court as evidence. The accused bought a house in Shamva using her relative Jean Mapero whose lifestyle is not consistent with someone who can raise a substantial amount to buy a house.”

Mr Kuwanda linked the house to the stolen money and said another house she allegedly bought in Shamva using someone’s name was not linked to the stolen money. Tsekwete will be sentenced on Monday. Mr Reza alleged that Kawe stumbled upon cash amounting to $700 000 which Mr Jamil Farogh left in one of the drawers in the kitchen while travelling to Gweru. Kawe allegedly approached Tsekwete and Nyandoro and informed them about the money before they connived to steal it.

At the time of their arrest, Tsekwete had bought two houses in Shamva, a Mazda 323 and had $8 500 cash. Kawe allegedly bought a residential property in Chitungwiza and a Mitsubishi Canter lorry and used up the remainder, while Nyandoro bought a house in Unit K, Chitungwiza and a Honda CRV. Mr Reza alleged that the three bought the properties using third parties to avoid detection.

Source : The Herald