Fungai Lupande Senior Court Reporter
A 34-year-old South African woman yesterday appeared in court after she was arrested at Robert Mugabe International Airport in Harare with more than five kilogrammes of cocaine with a street value of $430 000 loaded in 125 bobbins of white sewing thread.
Thlinolui Jack was coming from Angola.
She appeared before Harare magistrate Ms Rumbidzai Mugwagwa facing a charge of dealing in dangerous drugs.
She was represented by Mr Norman Tsarwe and was remanded in custody to January 16.
Prosecuting, Ms Linda Gadzikwa alleged that on December 31, Jack arrived in the country aboard an Angolan flight.
The court heard that during clearing of passengers, Jack’s red suitcase went through the scan while she went through the green route as if she did not have anything to declare.
She was allegedly stopped by suspicious Zimbabwe Revenue Authority officials, who alerted the police.
CID Drugs and Narcotics detectives demanded to search her luggage and it is alleged that Jack showed signs of discomfort.
Suspecting that she was carrying an illicit consignment, the detectives searched the luggage and discovered 125 black bobbins of white sewing thread containing a whitish powder stashed in the holes.
The powder was tested in the presence of Jack and tested positive for cocaine. It weighed 5 382kg and was estimated at $430 560.
Last year, a 32-year-old drug trafficker, Beauty Mutashu, was sentenced to an effective eight years in prison for trying to smuggle 3,8 kilogrammes of cocaine worth $304 000 into Zimbabwe from Brazil.
She was arrested at the airport with the cocaine concealed in 11 shirts in her luggage.
In March last year, Fungai Maguta (39) was sentenced to four years in prison for smuggling into the country 274 grammes of cocaine worth about $22 000.
She arrived at the then Harare International Airport with the cocaine hidden in her bottom.