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Top Gweru cop in court for abuse of office

By Stephen Chadenga

The officer-in-charge CID Gweru, Leonard Gwandu, yesterday appeared in court facing allegations of releasing a stolen vehicle held at Gweru Central Police Station as an exhibit.

Detective Inspector Gwandu appeared before Gweru provincial magistrate Tawengwa Sangster on charges of criminal abuse of office.

The accused, through his lawyer Nomore Hlabano, however, successfully applied to be remanded out of custody and was granted $1 000 bail.

The matter was postponed to January 17 for trial.

In applying for bail Hlabano argued that his client had served the police for 23 years with a clean record.

The State alleges that on December 14 last year Gwandu released a Toyota Hilux, valued at US$27 000, which was confiscated from Kwekwe businessman Shepherd Tundiya after it was allegedly discovered that it had been stolen from South Africa.

Allegations are that Tundiya, who had been arrested on October 16 last year in connection with the motor vehicle, was acquitted at the Gweru Magistrates Court on December 13.

The following day Gwandu allegedly released the stolen vehicle to Tundiya without following the due procedure.

The State further alleges that the car was stolen in South Africa from one Thomas Blom of CMH Toyota and was being investigated by Alberton police station in South Africa under case number 233/11/2017.

The State said the vehicle was supposed to be handed to South African police following due process but the accused handed it to Tundiya.

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