Two Beitbridge-based customs and clearing agents have been arrested in connection with 24 counts of defrauding a local company of $40 000 between May 2013 and January this year.
Gift Moyo (44) and Beata Matare (44) all of Dulibadzimu suburb had been hired by N and R Enterprises to facilitate the importation of goods from South Africa which were meant for resale at one of its wholesalers.
The two are accused of forging customs documents to charge the complainant more money on import duty required by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (zimra).
They would then pocket the surplus.
Moyo and Matare pleaded not guilty to the charges when they appeared before Beitbridge magistrate, Mr Innocent Bepura, who remanded them to 3 February for trial on $300 bail each.
He also ordered them to surrender their passports to the clerk of court, to continue residing at their given residential addresses and to report once to Criminal Investigations Department in Beitbridge as part of their bail conditions.
They were also ordered not to interfere with witnesses.
Prosecutor Mr Foster Abheki told the court that the accused persons were once employed by Datlows Clearing Company Beitbridge (2013-2014) and were contracted by N and R Enterprises to clear goods for the company’s wholesale.
He said Matare was the clearing clerk who conducted the clearing of the goods, while Moyo was the manager who cross-checked transactions and activities on money deposited into Datlows zimra account BP Account No. 02200077601.
The court further heard that between May 4, 2013 and January 16 this year, the two connived to inflate duty charges to zimra on goods belonging to N and R Enterprises which they were clearing.
During that time, they allegedly prejudiced the company of $39 323.
The offence came to light when one of the senior managers at N and R Enterprises noticed an anomaly during an audit in October 2014. Management then confronted Moyo who then offered the company his Nissan Sunny valued at $800 and a residential stand as repayment of the money defrauded the firm.
N and R Enterprises later made a report to the police on January 16, this year after failing to recover their money from the two accused persons resulting in their arrest.