Ex-top cop in court for criminal abuse of office

Former police Senior Assistant Commissioner Robert Tendero Masukusa was yesterday brought to court on summons to face charges of criminal abuse of office after he allegedly sent his personal vehicle to Zimoco for repairs on the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) account.

Masukusa was represented by Tapson Dzvetero when he appeared before Harare magistrate Francis Mapfumo, who postponed the trial to March 20 after the defence indicated that they only received the court papers a day before the scheduled trial.

The former top cop was responsible for overseeing all operations of the transport and logistics department, duties which involved repairing, conducting boards of surveys and keeping the records of all police vehicles.

It is the State case that between November 2015 and December 2016, Masukusa used his position and took his personal vehicle, a Mercedes-Benz ML320 to Zimoco for repairs under the ZRP account.

The State alleges the ZRP account at Zimoco only caters for repairs done on police vehicles and not personal ones.

Masukusa, in a bid to cover up his tracks, allegedly deceived Zimoco by using the ZRP 404F number, thereby making the garage staff believe that the Mercedes-Benz ML320 was a police vehicle.

Zimoco is said to have carried out the requested repairs by Masukusa, with ZRP bearing the expenses.

Allegations are the ZRP 404F number was for a police vehicle, an E300 Mercedes-Benz, which had mechanical problems and was held at Police Chitungwiza transport workshop since August 2014.

On November 27, 2015, Masukusa allegedly had the rear shocks of his vehicle renewed.

On January 6, 2016, he again took the same vehicle to Zimoco and had the front SAM renewed and the coding carried out.

On April 12, 2016, he allegedly took the vehicle to Zimoco again and various services were carried out, namely renewal of the right rear driveshaft, renewal of all brake pads, renewal of camber strut, renewal of strut arm as well as carrying out full wheel alignment value service.

It is alleged ZRP was prejudiced of $7 147 and nothing was recovered.

Nyikadzino Machingura appeared for the State.

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