A POLICE Assistant Inspector based in Gwanda allegedly chewed $200 he had demanded as a bribe when he was cornered by two police officers immediately after receiving the dirty money.
Medicine Siketha (38) who is stationed at Gwanda Urban Police Station allegedly demanded the bribe from a local businessman Mr Tamuka Zhou to facilitate the clearance of his vehicle which had been impounded by the police.
The court heard that police were tipped off that Siketha had demanded a bribe and they set a trap.
There was a scuffle at Gwanda Urban Police Station’s car park when two police officers allegedly wrestled with Siketha who then allegedly shoved the money into his mouth to conceal evidence.
The officers choked Siketha and he spit out the two $100 notes.
Siketha was subsequently arrested.
He appeared before Gwanda Magistrate Nomagugu Ncube on Friday facing a charge of criminal abuse of office.
He pleaded not guilty and was remanded on $100 bail to September 2.
Prosecuting, Mr Takuda Mapfudze said on Thursday last week at around 11AM, Siketha allegedly phoned Zhou and demanded $300 to facilitate the clearance and release of his Mitsubishi colt vehicle which had been impounded by CID Gwanda for investigations.
After allegedly receiving the call, Mr Zhou phoned a police inspector informing him about Siketha’s demands.
“Insp Chidzambwa applied for a trap and his application was approved. A trap team was instituted with trap money consisting of two $100 notes. Siketha was being monitored by police intelligence members constable Ndaramira and constable Mazheke who were part of the trap team,” said Mr Mapfudze.
Zhou allegedly arranged with Siketha to meet his employee Mr Nqobile Mpofu at ZRP Gwanda car park. He claimed that he had managed to raise $200 leaving a balance of $100.
“While inside Siketha’s vehicle Mpofu handed over the money. The two constables who were monitoring them immediately pounced on the two and found Siketha in possession of the $200.
“Siketha who was holding the two notes in his hand,then crumpled the money and shoved it into his mouth and chewed it. Ndaramira and Mazheke held Siketha by the throat and he spat the two notes,” said Mr Mapfudze
The money was recovered and the serial numbers matched with the trap money leading to his arrest.
Mr Mapfudze said the photographs of the money and the chewed trap money would be produced in court as exhibits-Chronicle