Aspiring Zanu PF MP spends weekend in jail over money laundering

The duo is facing fraud, money laundering and theft of trust property involving US$500 000.

Zanu PF Makoni West constituency aspiring candidate Moses Ruwona will spend the weekend behind bars after Harare regional magistrate Stanford Mambanje postponed his bail ruling to tomorrow.

Ruwona is charged alongside Macmillan Chiweshe and they are being represented by Oliver Marwa.

The duo is facing fraud, money laundering and theft of trust property involving US$500 000.

In opposing bail, the state said the two may flee the country and also interfere with state witnesses.

Prosecutors said there was overwhelming evidence against the pair, the offence was serious and called for a lengthy jail term.

Ruwona defeated sitting Member of Parliament Jenfan Muswere, who is also the Information and Communication Technology minister, in the Zanu PF primaries.

He was later disqualified under controversial circumstances to pave way for Muswere.

Prosecutors said sometime in December 2022, Aubrey Chademana, the complainant, was awarded a contract by Liquid Telecommunications Holdings Pvt Limited to supply outdoor Wi-Fi routers.

Chademana was supposed to import Wi-Fi routers from Liquid Telecommunication Holdings in Mauritius.

It is alleged that on December 8, Chademana engaged Ruwona who undertook to settle the payment using his offshore Foreign Currency Account.

On December 8, Chiweshe received US$630 400 from the complainant and forwarded it to Ruwona to settle the bill.

Ruwona reportedly provided a fake proof of payment document claiming to have transferred the money from his account in Zambia to Liquid Telecommunications, Mauritius’ Standard Bank.

On January 20, 2023, Ruwona and Chiweshe again sent the complainant another fake proof of payment.

They did the same on February 3.

On February 15, they sent a proof of payment of US$426 420 and on February 17, they sent a proof of payment of US$203 910.

Investigations showed that they never paid a single cent.

On March 7, they successfully transferred US$280 332 and US$132 151.24 to Liquid Telecommunications, Mauritius, but failed to account for the remaining US$218 249.

Using the same modus operandi, they allegedly duped Access Finance of US$256 000 in a deal to import some fabric material.

In their bail application, the duo’s lawyer Oliver Marwa said:  “The basis of the charges is that the complainants (Access Forex) gave money to Chiweshe in Zimbabwe so that Ruwona would settle foreign obligations due by Access Forex.

“It is accepted that the two applicants do not operate a money transfer agency and that Access Forex did not go through exchange control authorities in their transactions that they allege of the accused.”

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