Gardener and Wife Steal US$40 000 from Businessman and Go on a Spending Spree
A Harare businessman, Ian Macmillan, was left reeling after his gardener, Lot Chakanga, and the latter’s wife, Sofia Siakakaye, allegedly stole US$40,000 from him. The couple used the money to buy cars and houses.
The Alleged Theft
Zimlive reports that according to court papers, the theft took place on March 23 this year at Macmillan’s Chisipite home. The businessman had returned home driving his Land Rover Discovery and asked Chakanga to assist him in disembarking from the vehicle. Chakanga took out Macmillan’s wheelchair from the back of the vehicle and took him inside the house.
While Chakanga cleaned the vehicle, Macmillan left an envelope containing US$40,000 in the glove compartment. Chakanga later left all the doors and windows of the vehicle closed. About an hour and 30 minutes later, Macmillan returned to the vehicle to collect the money but could not find it.
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The couple’s Spending Spree
Macmillan summoned Chakanga and two other gardeners to ask about the missing money, but they both denied seeing it. Later, two other gardeners were sent to search Chakanga’s staff quarters room, but they could not find the envelope with the cash.
Macmillan then reported the matter to the police and upon his return at around 5pm, he found Chakanga and his wife had vanished. It is alleged that Chakanga had taken the cash and handed it over to his wife for safekeeping.
Further questioning revealed that the couple had bought a house in Rusununguko, Chinhoyi. They also purchased a Nissan two-tonne lorry for US$3,000 and building materials. The couple had gone on a spending spree with the stolen cash.
The Court Proceedings
Chakanga and Siakakaye were charged with theft and have been released on bail. The trial is set to commence on May 16.