Bulawayo cop up for extortion

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BULAWAYO – A Bulawayo CID homicide cop has been dragged to court on allegations of extorting $1 500 from a director of a local firm.

Fredric Topia, 34, stationed at Hillside Police Station, appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Victor Mpofu facing extortion charges.

Topia, who is represented by Tungamirai Nyengera of Mcijo and Dube law firm, was not asked to plead.

He was remanded on $100 bail and ordered to report back to court on December 2.

It is the State’s case that on November 15 at around 5pm, Topia discovered 150 boxes of Curvillies cigarettes at house number 12 Evelyn Road in Sauercetown suburb where Wilson Manyati, the director of Horns and Taps General Dealer, resides.

Since Manyati was away in South Africa, Topia allegedly demanded $1 500 from the complainant as a way of stopping the confiscation of the Curvillies cigarettes by the State.

Manyati reportedly instructed his sister to give the accused $700 of which the remainder was to be settled immediately upon his return, the court heard.

On November 21, Manyati returned from South Africa and proceeded to CID headquarters at MBCA building where he lodged a complaint against the accused.

This led to a trap being set up.

On the same day, Manyati gave the accused a further $30 which the accused wanted to use for refuelling his car. As part of the trap, the serial numbers were noted in the diary by one of the detectives.

Later on the day, the court heard that the two met at a local pub where the said money was exchanged in full view of  undercover detectives, resulting in Topia’s arrest.

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