Police have intensified investigations into a case in which they raided a Harare company following a tip-off last Thursday and recovered US$4 million in cash and 98 kilogrammes of gold stashed in suitcases. Sources close to the investigations yesterday said so far they have proved that the company owners had a licence to deal in gold that was issued on July 2 this year.
They said investigations to ascertain how the suspects had managed to raise US$4 million and 98kg within a shot space of time were still continuing.
There are fears that the suspects intended to smuggle the cash and gold out of the country using illegal means, but this was thwarted following the tip-off.
Last week, national police spokesman Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi confirmed the raid, saying the suspects had been picked up for questioning.
Police received a tip-off that the suspects were illegally dealing in gold at their premises in Borrowdale and went to investigate.
Police have since confiscated the money and gold as part of the investigations.
The cash was in US$100, US$50, US$20 and US$10 denominations.
The suspects were taken to Borrowdale Police Station in Harare for further investigations.
Chief Supt Nyathi said investigations were being done in consultation with other State agencies.
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police is still verifying the origins of the 98kg of gold and cash which were recovered at a certain company’s premises in Borrowdale on 5th July 2018,” he said.
“Investigations are being conducted in consultation with other relevant State institutions such as the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and Fidelity Printers. The gold and cash have since been secured by monetary authorities in the country.”
Chief Supt Nyathi said the public would be advised in due course on the progress of the verification process.
The country has been negatively affected by externalisation of money for a long time.
In August last year, police hunted down three Bulawayo businesspeople on allegations of externalising over $7,3 million to Botswana.
The three were identified as Delny Deanna Ashley (41), Farid Shahadat (45) and Ryan Gregory Joseph (29).
They were wanted for contravening Section 8 (1) paragraph (b) of the Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act, Chapter 9:24.
President Mnangagwa last year gave an ultimatum to those who externalised funds and assets to repatriate them within three months.
The ultimatum expired in February and a list of those who defied returning the funds and assets was published.
President Mnangagwa last week said at least $850 million of the looted $1,4 billion had since been returned to the country.