A Kadoma-based businessman has been arrested for allegedly stealing land and property through numerous fake companies he created.
Believe Guta (36) of Coal Estate, Kadoma, was arraigned before Harare magistrate Marehwanazvo Gofa on Monday this week.
Guta, who was being represented by Lovemore Madhuku, was remanded in custody while awaiting ruling on a remand placement application submitted by his lawyer.
Prosecutor Lancelot Mutsokoti said in 1997, Balwearie applied to the Kadoma Municipality for the subdivision of a 970 653-hectare stand in Sabonabona Estate to create agro-residential stands.
After obtaining the subdivision permit, the company entered into an agreement of sale with one Edmore Samson which stated that Balwearie Holdings would sell the land for US$91 000 which was payable in instalments.
The instalments were expected to be paid through a company called Parameter Investments (Pvt) Ltd, but the contract was cancelled in 2002. The court heard that at the time the contract was cancelled, 69 homeseekers had acquired stands through Parameter Investments and they subsequently remained on the land while awaiting regularisation of their agreements of sale.
Mutsokoti told the court that Guta and his accomplices, who are still unknown and at large, approached the Registrar of Companies in June 2020 and successfully registered a company which they named Balwearie Holdings (Private) Limited.
They allegedly approached the High Court seeking an order to declare that the original company Balwearie Holdings (1977) dissolved, and the new company named as Balwearie Holdings (Pvt) Ltd as the legitimate owner of Sabonabona Estate. After getting the judgment, Guta and his accomplices reportedly served eviction notices to the 69 residents, claiming that they were illegally occupying the land.
Guta and his accomplices allegedly went on to create more fake companies which they used to acquire Balwearie Holdings (1977)’s assets. The court further heard that Guta registered a company called Sabre Services (Pvt) Ltd to mimic the company called Sabre Services (Pvt) Ltd  which used to file annual returns for Balwearie Holdings (Private) Limited .
After registering the company in 2020, Guta filed a fraudulent application and obtained another default judgment against Balwearie Holdings (Private) Limited  at the Bulawayo High Court.
He declared that the CR14 form which appointed the directors for Balwearie Holdings (Private) Limited  was null and void as they did not file it as Sabre Services (Pvt) Ltd, which only came into existence in 2020.
Investigations uncovered that there was a misrepresentation of facts because Sabre Services (Pvt)  which filed the CR14 in question on behalf of Balwearie Holdings (Private) Limited  in 2007 was formed in 2005 and is different from the copycat.
Mutsokoti told the court that Guta also registered another company called Paragon Real Estate (Pvt) Ltd in an attempt to imitate Parameter Investments (Pvt) Ltd, trading as Paragon Real Estate with the intention to nullify the agreements of sale of the 69 Sabonabona residents who had purchased agro-residential stands at Sabonabona Estate.
After securing the registration of Paragon Real Estate (Pvt) Ltd, Guta and his accomplices allegedly filed a High Court application seeking a declaratory order that it be the only legitimately registered Paragon Real Estate (Pvt) Ltd. He also indicated that the company did not enter into any agreement of sale with any of the 69 residents of agro-residential stands, hence such agreements be declared null and void.
The court papers additionally indicated in another application to the High Court seeking to liquidate Gatooma Development Corporation Private Limited. Guta also allegedly misrepresented that one Alois Mabhunu was formerly employed by the company and was owed a stand as compansation for unpaid wages.
A provisional order for liquidation was granted on January 12 last year, while a final order for liquidation was granted on February 16, 2022. According to court papaers, the Registrar of Companies’ investigations, however, revealed that Balwearie Holdings (2020) was erroneously registered to replicate Balwearie Holdings (Private) Limited . As a result, the Registrar of Companies is seized with the deregistration of the fake firms.
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