Fake stamps get man $30 000 fine

Source: Fake stamps get man $30 000 fine | The Sunday Mail

Fake stamps get man $30 000 fine

Thupeyo Muleya
Beitbridge Bureau

A 37-YEAR-OLD man, who is believed to be part of a syndicate using fake date stamps to clear goods and travellers at Beitbridge Border Post, has been fined $30 000.

Brian Zaranyika was busted by security on Friday evening after opening his office near the Port Health section.

He was found with four fake date stamps for the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) and the others for Port Health.

Zaranyika was convicted on his own plea of guilt for possession of articles for crime, when he appeared before Beitbridge Resident Magistrate, Mr Takudzwa Gwazemba.

In default of paying the fine, he risks imprisonment for two months.

A further four months of the sentence were conditionally suspended for five years, while the four fake date stamps were forfeited to the State.

Prosecutor, Mr Ronald Mugwagwa told the court that Zaranyika was in the habit of processing travellers and goods at the border using the fake date stamps.

He was spotted by some travellers who tipped the border security agents on December 15. Zaranyika was then put on surveillance, until his arrest near the Port Health section on Friday evening.

A search was conducted leading to the discovery of a fake Port Health stamp, Zimra manifest control, Zimra private import counters and motor insurance pool date stamps, laptop and a printer.

The use of fake customs and immigration stamps is common at the Beitbridge Border Post, where border authorities have arrested more than 10 people in the last 12 months.

It is understood that the syndicates are using the stamps to illegally extend the stay of travellers in either Zimbabwe or South Africa.

An ordinary Zimbabwean is allowed a stay of not more than 90 days per calendar year in South Africa.

South Africans are allowed a stay of 30 days per each visit to Zimbabwe.

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