Thupeyo Muleya Beitbridge Bureau
Chief Maranda, born Brighton Maranda (46) of Mwenezi area was today fined $40 000 for trying to bribe a police officer who had arrested him for border jumping.
The accused was arrested on Monday afternoon while going to South Africa through an illegal crossing point near the Old Limpopo (Alfred Beit-Bridge).
The accused, who was represented by Messrs Jabulani Mberesi and Forbes Sithole, was convicted on his own plea of guilty to charges of Bribery when he appeared before Beitbridge Resident Magistrate Takudzwa Gwazemba.
In the event the accused fails to pay the fine, he risks imprisonment for two months.
The R100 note, he used to bribe the policeman, was forfeited to the State as part of the sentence.
While handing down the sentence, Mr Gwazemba said the Chief was a person of high social standing and that he had stooped low in trying to bribe a police officer.
“The accused person who is also a judicial officer at the lower court level has stooped too low in trying to engage in corrupt activities.
“Corruption is a serious offence and therefore, deterrent sentences should be handed down to send a strong message to other would-be offenders,” he said.
Prosecuting, Mr Piet Magumula, said on May 9, the accused was intercepted by the police while using an illegal crossing point to travel to South Africa.
He said after being arrested the chief offered the arresting officer R100 to buy his freedom.
The police officer refused and charged him for bribery.