Traffic cop tries to swallow money after falling into trap

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THE ZRP officer commanding Mbare traffic was Friday dragged to the courts on allegations of demanding $120 bribe from a bus operator.

Violet Sigauke was caught red handed after a trap was set and tried to conceal the offence by swallowing $20 notes whose serial numbers had been recorded.zimbabwe-traffic-police

She appeared before magistrate Lazini Ncube facing criminal abuse of office charges and was remanded out of custody on $100 bail.

The cop however, levelled sexual harassment against the four detectives who arrested her saying she was still traumatised by their conduct.

It is State’s case that Sigauke phoned MamaRu commuter omnibus company’s manager, Kudzai Mapako, and told him that he was supposed to give her $120 every two weeks for his buses to operate freely on the route she manages.

Court heard Mapako then met Sigauke on January 8 this year and gave her $40. The cop complained that the money was too little and kept pressing Mapako for more.

According to prosecutors, she allegedly phoned Mapako on February 8 and demanded $60.

Mapako told her that he was out of Harare, adding he was going to send someone to Sigauke’s office at Mbare police station with the money before he reported the case at Police General Headquarters.

A trap was authorised and intelligence officers stationed at PGHQ proceeded to Mbare police station to execute the set-up.

One of Mapako’s conductors was given the money after the serial numbers were written down. He then went to Sigauke’s office and gave her $60 which was in $10 and $20 denominations.

After the conductor left the office, intelligence officers entered Sigauke’s office and identified themselves before conducting a search.

Court heard Sigauke reached for one of her top drawers and took the money out. She then removed her uniform belt, threatening to beat up the cops for betraying her.

The subordinates advanced towards her and Sigauke placed the money in her mouth intending to swallow it.

One of the officers identified as Mabwe reached for the cash and they wrestled until Sigauke bit his thumb.

Upon noticing the scuffle other officers intervened and the trap money was retrieved from Sigauke’s mouth, leading to her arrest.

Francesca Mukumbiri appeared for the state while Sigauke was represented lawyer Ashiel Mugiya.

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