CID director Commissioner Chrispen Charumbira was arrested yesterday on allegations of accepting protection money from drug and gold dealers to stop criminal investigations.
He was arrested by the Special Anti-Corruption Unit (Sacu) after seven of his junior officers alleged he had been interfering with their duties by protecting drug and gold dealers after accepting bundles of US dollars in protection money.
Comm Charumbira was picked up for questioning by Sacu officers in the morning before being taken to Morris Depot for further investigations and last night was detained at Rhodesville Police Station.
He is expected to appear in court tomorrow.
Sacu has apparently recorded statements from some of the junior officers who claim to have been transferred to outlying stations for defying Comm Charumbira’s orders to release arrested suspects.
Head of SACU, Mr Thabani Mpofu, said he was still checking for the details of the matter.
However, among the allegations is one dating from the days Comm Charumbira was CID co-ordinator for Harare.
According to the complaints, three detectives from CID Drugs and Narcotics arrested two Mufakose drug dealers, Norman Chabata and his brother Charles, after raiding their Mufakose home where they recovered 443g of dagga packed in sachets and bottles of BronCleer cough syrup.
While at the scene, it is alleged that they received a call from Comm Charumbira ordering them to release the two. Their immediate boss told them to instead follow the proper procedures and proceed with the investigations.
They were all later allegedly summoned by Comm Charumbira who informed them that their days at CID Drugs were numbered and should brace for transfers. The three compiled the dockets and saw the two tried with Charles Chabata given an eight-month jail term and Norman Chabata a US$100 fine by Harare Magistrates Court.
But the three detectives were transferred to CID Chiredzi, CID Lupane and CID Mount Darwin. After a complaint to CID Headquarters they were transferred back to CID Harare but understood they might still be sent to stations outside the city.
Another junior officer also alleged that between February 2016 and March 2016, he received information from a truck driver who suspected that a consignment he was carrying from Malawi might be dagga.
The driver was to meet with the recipients in the city and the junior officer teamed up with some of his colleagues and intercepted the consignment. The two sacks of mbanje were collected by two suspects who were arrested but were later acquitted by the courts.
Comm Charumbira is alleged to have also intervened when the two were arrested.
The junior officer told SACU that he was transferred from Harare to CID Hwange.
The latest arrest comes after the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) recently arrested some police officers and chief public prosecutor, Clement Chimbare, on allegations of abuse of office and bribery over their handling of the investigation into the illegal sale of stands in Kuwadzana in a US$1 million scam.
Some of them were deputy director for the police CID commercial crimes unit, Assistant Commissioner Obeylaw Moyo (47), Superintendent Naboth Nyachega, Detective Assistant Inspector Claudious Majonga (37) and Detective Constable Aaron Karuru (32).
It was alleged that they were paid off with housing stands for not arresting or not charging suspected kingpins in the scam.