Tendai Rupapa Senior Court Reporter
A South African investor allegedly lost more than $16 000 to a suspected fraudster in Masvingo in a botched mining deal.
Rodreck Mumbire misrepresented to the chief executive of Carbochem Cape (Pvt Ltd), Mr George Stephanus Durand, that he had mining claims in Masvingo.
However, he showed Durand the purported mine in an area covered by a game park, the court heard.
Mumbire appeared in court last Friday before Mr Milton Serima who charged him with fraud.
He was remanded to March 3 on $100 bail.
Prosecutor Miss Sharon Mashavira, alleged that sometime in 2011, Durand was looking for wolframite ore supply from Zimbabwe and tasked his lawyer Advocate De Villiers to look for suppliers.
Advocate De Villiers was referred to Mumbire who claimed to own a mine in Mushandike in Masvingo.
Mumbire misrepresented to the complainant that he had mining claims at Old Umshandike Mine. On March 16 last year, Durand flew to meet Mumbire and his purported business associates.
It is the State’s case that Durand was taken to Masvingo where he was shown the “mine”.
Durand became interested in the mining venture and Mumbire, the court heard, asked him to pay $30 000 as consultation fees.
According to the State, Durand did not have such an amount and opted to partner with Mumbire and form a company in which they would be directors.
Pursuant to his plan, Mumbire misrepresented to Durand that he wanted $8 050 for registration of the company and he transferred the money into Mumbire’s bank account.
Sometime in May, Mumbire further lied to Durand that there was need for geological survey to be done at the purported mine hence $7 200 was needed which the complainant sent.
On June 17, Mumbire also lied to the complainant that the money for the survey was not enough and asked for $1 200, which he said was to rent the required equipment for the job, it is alleged.
It is the State’s case that a survey was conducted and Mumbire told Durand that he had taken the samples to the metallurgy department for analysis and issuance of an export permit.
After about two months without the export permit, Durand became suspicious and made a report to the police.
Investigations revealed that the place which Durand was shown by Mumbire was actually part of a game park.
Checks were made with the Masvingo Mining Commissioner who stated that there was no such mine in their area.
Durand suffered a total prejudice of $16 490.