Illegal Foreign Currency Exchange Syndicate Busted, Three Appear in Court

by | May 13, 2024 | Business, Crime & Courts, Local News | 0 comments

Illegal Foreign Currency Exchange Syndicate Busted, Three Appear in Court


Nevanji Munyaradzi Chiondegwa


In a major crackdown on illicit financial activities, three individuals have been arraigned before the Harare Magistrates’ Court for their alleged involvement in an unlawful foreign currency exchange operation.


Neville Sunungurai Mutsvangwa (44), Ellas Majachani (45), and Simbarashe Tichingana (38) have been charged with one count of contravening the Exchange Control Act, one count of violating the Bank Use Promotion and Suppression of Money Laundering Act, and another count of contravening the Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act.


According to the state, the accused persons operated an unlicensed money transfer service called “Mumba Money Transfer” between January 2019 and May 2024. They are alleged to have advertised their services online and directed clients to their offices in Harare, utilizing a combination of electronic fund transfers and physical cash to facilitate their unauthorized transactions, while also leveraging foreign bank accounts to obfuscate their activities.


The arrests were made by the police on May 8, 2024, during which the authorities seized a cache of evidence, including 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, as well as USD3,890 in cash.


The state has opposed bail for the accused, and the investigating officer was called to provide testimony. The bail hearing is set to continue on Monday, May 13, 2024, at 8:30 am.


The case highlights the ongoing efforts by the Zimbabwean government to combat illicit financial activities and maintain control over the country’s foreign exchange market. Legal experts have emphasized the importance of strict adherence to financial regulations to ensure the stability and integrity of the financial system.