ZIA’s principal officer in court for doing fraud

ZIA’s principal officer in court for doing fraud


ZIMBABWE – Zimbabwe Immigration Authority’s principal officer, who was taken to court on allegations of fraudulently endorsing a re-entry visa for a Deutsch citizen, wants the court to clear her of the offence before being put to defense.

Sharon Chinoputsa yesterday made the indication after the State closes its case after leading all its witnesses.

Her defense lawyer, Obey Mashava, told Magistrate Tendai Mahwe that they would file a written application for discharge at the close of the State’s case on January 4.

The State is also expected to reply on the following before the court makes its ruling on January 26.

Chinoputsa is denying charges of ‘doing anything that is contrary or inconsistent with her duties as a public officer’.

Allegations facing the 29 year-old are that on February 14 2013 Chinoputsa was on duty at Liquenda House manning the residence permit desk when she was approached by an unknown person.

It is said that the person then handed Chinoputsa a passport belonging to Lutter Claudia.

Prosecutor Samantha Dhlamini also had it that Chinoputsa then endorsed a Zimbabwean re-entry visa valid for 12 months and also signed on the date stamp.

She also reportedly placed another date stamp and wrote “permanent resident of Zimbabwe” without having been satisfied that Lutter Claudia was a permanent resident in the country.

It is said that by virtue of signing on the date stamp Chinoputsa assumed the duty of a Chief Immigration Officer.

The permanent resident permit is supposed to be issued by the Chief Immigration Officer after the being satisfied that the foreign national meet the requirements as stated in the Immigration Act, according to the State.

The court heard that the visa granted by Chinoputsa allowed Lutter Claudia to obtain a Zimbabwean ID card on June 2013 as an alien.

Chinoputsa was arrested and taken to court over the offence.

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