Munyaradzi Musiiwa Midlands Correspondent
Gweru officer-in-charge Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Detective Inspector Leonard Gwandu, was last Friday arrested on allegations of criminal abuse of office after he released a vehicle suspected to have been stolen in South Africa.
Det Insp Gwandu appeared before Gweru magistrate Tavengwa Sangster on Saturday facing charges of criminal abuse of duty as a public officer.
He was remanded on $1 000 bail to January 17.
The State alleged that Gwandu released a Toyota Hilux Raider to businessman Shepherd Tundiya without following due process.
The court heard that Tundiya was arrested in October after being suspected of driving a stolen vehicle which did not have registration number plates.
The vehicle was taken to CID Gweru where Gwandu is the officer-in-charge.
It is alleged that Gwandu and other junior police officers checked the vehicle on the Interpol database which is installed in his office.
The database showed that the vehicle might have been stolen from Mr Thomas Blom in South Africa.
Tundiya was subsequently charged with theft of a motor vehicle, and was acquitted on December 13 last year, but no order was made as to the disposal of the vehicle.
It was heard that the police had not handed over the vehicle documents to the clerk of court to enable the court to issue an order of disposition.
On December 14, the court heard, Gwandu released the vehicle which South African Police Service officers were coming to identify.
Tundiya told the court that he bought the vehicle from a car dealer, Patrick Mutodi, in Harare.
He said he was also a victim in the event that the car was stolen.