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Neville Mutsvangwa in court for using StarLink internet service

Neville Sunungurai Mutsvangwa (44), who was arraigned before the Harare Magistrates Court on Friday, 10 May, with two others on allegations of dealing in currency, unlawful trading in cash, and money laundering, is facing another charge of contravening the Postal and Telecommunication Act.

According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), was allegedly found in possession of star link equipment. The NPA said:

On the 9th of May 2024, the Police received a tip-off to the effect that the accused person was in possession of star link equipment.

The Police acted on the tip-off and proceeded to the accused person’s place of residence in Mount Pleasant where a star link router was recovered.

The accused person could not produce a license which gave him the authority to use the star link router.

The accused person was remanded in custody to Monday the 13th of May 2024 for continuation of his bail hearing.

Mutsvangwa and his co-accused Ellas Majachani (45) and Simbarashe Tichingana (38) were also before the Harare Magistrates’ Court facing one count of contravening section 5(1)(a)(ii) of the Exchange Control Act [Chapter 22:05] as read with section 4(1)(a)(1) of the Exchange Control Regulations SI 109 of 1996 “Dealing in foreign currency”, one count of contravening the Bank Use Promotion and Suppression of Money Laundering Act and another count of contravening the Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act.

Prosecutors alleged that during the period extending from 01 January 2019 to 08 May 2024, the accused persons formed Mumba Money Transfer services without a license in violation of the Bank Use Promotion and Suppression of Money Laundering Act and Exchange Control Act.

The accused persons allegedly advertised on the internet directing clients to their offices in Harare. They employed a combination of electronic funds transfers and physical cash for their unlawful transactions, leveraging foreign bank accounts to obfuscate their activities.

Upon their arrest on Wednesday, 08 May 2024, Police recovered 4 smartphones, 45 sim cards, 4 computers, 1 point of sale (POS) machine, 28 debit cards (including 15 VISA cards issued by foreign banks), 3 money counters and a register of transactions and US$3890 cash.

The State opposed bail and called the investigating officer to give oral evidence. The Court adjourned mid-testimony. The bail hearing is set to continue on Monday, 13 April at 8:30 AM.

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