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TWO High Court officials are facing jail for allegedly conniving with relatives to fake official documents.

The duo, along with a Zhombe woman and her brother in-law, are alleged to have created a fake certificate of authority normally issued by the Master of the High Court and used the document to pillage her late father’s estate.

The quartet, James Mabangure, Tafadzwa Munetsi, (the two High Court officials), Edina Nyakuromba and Zakeyo Gideon were hauled before a Harare magistrate last week on charges of fraud.

They are due to appear in court again this week to apply for bail.

Obram Trust an estate administration company fronted by Oliver Masomera, its managing director, is the complainant in the matter.

Nyakuromba is daughter to the late Kwevakuru Nicholas Nyakuromba while Gideon is the brother in law to the first accused. Mabangure is a Trust and taxing officer in the Master of the High Court’s office in Harare while Munetsi is a judges’ clerk at the same court.

According to court documents, Nyakuromba died in December 2012, and left behind two wives and three children.

The late Nyakuromba’s estate was registered in Manicaland’s Rusape District before a dispute arose on the appointment of the estate’s executioner amongst the surviving family members.

Masomera was then appointed as an independent executioner following the dispute and reference of the case to the Master of the High Court for arbitration.

It is the state’s case that in or about 2013 Nyakuromba and Gideon hatched a plan to defraud the complainant. Pursuant to their plan, the pair allegedly approached the Master of the High Court and obtained the deceased’s NMB bank statement, reflecting a balance of $8 033.

They then approached High Court officials Mabangure and Munetsi to assist with crafting a fake certificate of authority to withdraw the money and convert it to their own use.

Mabangure and Munetsi allegedly manufactured the fake certificate of authority in Nyakuromba’s favour.

Nyakuromba and Gideon then on an unidentified date connived to withdraw the estate money at NMB Eastlea branch. The quartet allegedly shared the “spoils” and converted the money to personal use.

The offence came to light after Masomera learnt that the estate funds had been clandestinely withdrawn. A police report was filed, leading to the arrest of the four.

Nothing was recovered.

Source : New Zimbabwe

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