CID boss shipped to remand prison
CRIMINAL Investigation Department (CID) boss, Crispen Charumbira, will spend the next fortnight in remand prison following his court appearance on corruption charges yesterday.
Charumbira, the national director at the CID, allegedly interfered with lawful arrests by ordering his subordinates to abort some criminal investigations.
He was represented by Tabson Bvekwa and Sylvester Hashiti when he appeared before Harare regional magistrate Marewanazvo Gofa. He elected to apply for bail at the High Court after prosecutor Michael Reza had indicated that the State was opposed to bail.
The State’s main fear was that considering Charumbira’s “influential” position, he would interfere with investigations and witnesses if released.
He was remanded in custody to October 8, pending the hearing of his bail application. Reza alleged that on December 17, 2015, detectives who were identified as Ndlovu, Mbundire and Munyandure, of CID Drugs in Harare, had received information that Charles Chabata Magolise was in possession of dangerous drugs at his place of residence.
The team reacted to the information and subsequently arrested him, before a search was conducted leading to the recovery of 443g of dagga.
When he heard that Magolise had been arrested, Charumbira allegedly called Ndlovu — instructing him to release him.
However, the team did not take heed of the instructions and took him to Harare Central for docket compilation, after consultation with the officer commanding CID Drugs, Harare.
The court also heard that when Charumbira arrived at Harare Central, he allegedly summoned the arresting team to his office and pleaded with them to release the accused person.
After realising that the team was not yielding to his demands, Charumbira became emotional and ordered them out of his office.
Magolise was later taken to court where he was convicted — before being sentenced to eight months in prison.
It was further alleged that in 2016, detectives — identified as Moyo and Nkomo of CID Drugs and Narcotics — got a tip off from a truck driver, Salim Ibrahim, that a couple was carrying a suspicious consignment of two sacks which was to be received by unknown recipients at the offices of the National Railways of Zimbabwe.
The two detectives laid an ambush at the spot, leading to the arrest of Violet and Kelvin Muzondo after they had collected the two sacks of dagga.
They were taken to Harare Central for further investigations, but Charumbira allegedly instructed Moyo to release the suspects — an order that he refused to comply with.
The following day, Moyo met the then assistant commissioner, Charumbira, who accused him of being big-headed and quizzed him as to why he had refused to comply with his instructions.
On the last count, it was alleged that in February this year detectives in Manicaland received a tip-off that David Cosby of Mutare was in possession of illegal gold and diamonds.
The crack team, armed with a search warrant, reacted to the information intending to arrest Cosby.
When Cosby was shown the warrant, he immediately called Charumbira — who allegedly questioned the credibility of the operation — indicating that he was the only one who could authorise such operations.
Charumbira allegedly caused the crack team to abort the operation and report back to their stations.
This comes as police commissioner-general Godwin Matanga has transferred a number of senior police officers in recent weeks — with some of them being re-assigned out of the capital city after being mired in allegations of corruption.
In recent weeks, several high-ranking police officers have also been arrested and arraigned before the Harare Magistrates’ Courts over allegations of graft — ranging from abuse of office to receiving housing stands from alleged land barons.