AN Esigodini policeman is in trouble after he allegedly demanded more than $400 bribe from a theft suspect.
Norman Madhumbu, 33, allegedly demanded money from Norah Ndlovu, of Mzimuni area in Gwanda District, who was a suspect in the theft case that the cop was investigating.
Madhumbu appeared before Gwanda magistrate Arafat Kozanai facing charges of extortion and/or criminal abuse of office as a public officer.
Through his lawyer, McAllister Ncube, the cop denied the charges and Kozanai remanded him out of custody to February 11 for trial.
Prosecutor Edward Ndlovu said that on an unknown date but in January 2015, Madhumbu was investigating a case of theft involving gas cylinders.
During investigations, he established that the complainant Norah Ndlovu’s daughter had bought gas in Bulawayo and had swapped a gas cylinder at Gaslip Shop.
“On January 23, 2015 at about 7PM, Madhumbu went to the complainant’s homestead in the company of Constable Gugulethu Sibanda who is also stationed at Esigodini Police Station. Madhumbu identified himself as Ndlovu, a police officer stationed at Esigodini.
“He informed the complainant that the cylinder that Norah’s daughter, Sithembiso Ndlovu, had swapped at Gaslip shop in Bulawayo was stolen property. Madhumbu then threatened to arrest Sithembiso,” the court was told.
The prosecutor said to help conceal Sithembiso’s alleged crime, Madhumbu allegedly demanded money from Norah and was given $50.
Edward Ndlovu said Madhumbu indicated the money was not enough. He said the accused wanted $400 more to save the suspect from arrest.
Norah, the court was told, allegedly failed to pump out the additional $400.
“The accused nevertheless took Sithembiso Ndlovu to Esigodini where he released her on the following day after the complainant had made a follow up. Norah discovered that the matter had not been recorded anywhere in police books. Madhumbu continued demanding the money from the complainant via cellphone. Norah reported the matter to police at Gwanda District headquarters,” said prosecutor Ndlovu.