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HomeCourtsSenior Police Detectives Acquitted of Charges in Alleged Treasure Hunt

Senior Police Detectives Acquitted of Charges in Alleged Treasure Hunt

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Three senior police detectives from the Asset Forfeiture Unit CID Headquarters have been acquitted of charges related to an alleged treasure hunt in Nyanyadzi back in 2022.

The trio, Shephered Tachiona, Mkhululi Nyoni (51), and Monica Madzima, were cleared of all accusations, with the court ruling that their actions were lawful.

Magistrate Fadzai Mthombeni acquitted the defendants at the close of the State’s case, where they were facing charges of criminal abuse of duty as public officers, as defined in Section 174 (1) (a) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, Chapter 9.23.

The defense team, comprising Joseph Nemaise, Musindo Hungwe, and George Manokore, successfully argued that the prosecution failed to provide substantial evidence against their clients. The state’s case relied on witness testimonies, including that of police assistant commissioner Themba Mushoriwa, which was discredited under cross-examination.

Mushoriwa’s testimony revealed inconsistencies, as he initially claimed that the accused acted beyond their jurisdiction but later admitted that their policing areas covered the regions in question. Moreover, it was established that the defendants had lawfully obtained a search warrant before conducting the operation.

Supporting witnesses further corroborated the defendants’ actions. Simangaliso Memory Mushaya, an Agricultural Extension Officer, confirmed that the police were authorized to conduct the search, as did Victor Mukungunugwa, a scientist employed by the Zimbabwe National Geospacial Space Agency, who verified the presence of the hidden treasure.

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Revesai Zvigodini Matimba, a prophet skilled in detecting hidden minerals, attested that he was invited by the accused to assist with the survey, emphasizing his willingness to aid the state without compensation.

Ultimately, Magistrate Mthombeni ruled in favor of the defendants, stating that the prosecution failed to prove their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The court emphasized that there was no evidence to suggest any wrongdoing on the part of the accused.

According to the prosecution, the defendants allegedly conducted the search without proper authorization. However, it was clarified that they possessed a valid search and seizure warrant issued by a Resident Magistrate.

The defendants’ legal team welcomed the verdict, asserting that justice had prevailed. The acquitted officers maintained that their actions were in accordance with their duties and expressed gratitude for the court’s decision.

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