Daniel Kachere Court Correspondent
A Chinese man appeared in court on Tuesday charged with externalising $20 million earned from lint exports.
Ju Wenbin (47) also faces three fraud charges after he allegedly swindled a local businesswoman Lillian Nyamasoka of $100 000.
Ju appeared before magistrate Mr Francis Mapfumo and was granted $2000 bail and ordered to surrender his passport to the clerk of court.
He was remanded to October 15 for trial.
Allegations are that during the 2014 cotton buying season, China-Africa Cotton Zimbabwe (Pvt) Ltd bought 21 194 tonnes of raw cotton from 35 central buying points.
An extra 1 864 tonnes were also realised bringing the total tonnage to 23 058 tonnes.
China – Africa Cotton Zimbabwe (Pvt) Ltd is a foreign investment company that received funding from the China Africa Development Fund and is in the business of contract farming and exporting cotton lint with an obligation to repatriate proceeds back to Zimbabwe.
According to the then company’s country head Mr Cuthbert Chakanyuka, an application of 8 100 tonnes was made for export.
A difference of 782, 88 tonnes was never accounted for by the accused leaving a total of $13 324 320.
The accused person clandestinely under declared the price of the exports to $1.50 per kilogramme instead of the international pricing structure of $2.07 per kilogramme.
A total of $12 150 000 was never repatriated to Zimbabwe bringing the actual externalised amount to $19 852 938.
On fraud counts, on April 24,2014 the accused acting in connivance with Yu Zenghu and Song Jian went to Standard Chartered Bank, Harare where they tendered an outdated CR14 form, which purported that the directorship of China-Africa Cotton Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited was composed of Kudakwashe Maria Jin, Yu Zenghu, Yang Ke, Song Jian and Wang Chuanyuan.
They also submitted a document that purported that the company board had made a resolution to open a new bank account with the same bank.
Acting on that misrepresentation, Standard Chartered Bank opened an account number 8700206582900 in the name of China-Africa Cotton Zimbabwe (Pvt) Limited where they became signatories.
When they opened the account they knew that the directorship of the company composed of the accused, Yu Zenghu, Song Jian, Deng Yufei and the complainant.
On May 15, 2014 the accused and his accomplices and approached Barclays Bank Zimbabwe using the same modus operandi and opened account number 1026937 in the name of the same company.
They used the same method with CBZ bank in Harare to open account number 0293914960011 on June 24,2014.
The accused and his accomplices then approached Stanbic bank in Harare and made bank transfers to the Standard Chartered and Barclays bank accounts from the company’s Stanbic bank account worth $50 000 each on May 12, 2015.
The transfers were done without the consent and knowledge of Nyamasoka.
Their actions caused Stanbic bank to flout banking laws thereby prejudicing the complainant of $100 000.