Gardener jailed seven years for theft

By Fungai Jachi

The Harare gardener who stole US$38 000 and 2000 British pounds from his employer and went on to build himself a lavish rural home has been slapped with a seven-year jail term by Harare magistrate, Ms Barbra Mateko.

Twenty-seven-year old Gift Nyamayevhu, who was convicted at his own plea of guilt last week, was handed a seven-year jail term before three years were suspended for five years on condition of good behavior.

He will serve an effective four-year jail term.

Nyamayevhu admitted to buying a farm in Mhondoro using the proceeds of crime.

In passing sentence, the magistrate noted that despite being a first offender, Nyamayevhu had started at the deep end hence a custodial sentence would send the right message to would be offenders.

She also noted that Nyamayevhu had bitten the hand that fed him, hence his moral blameworthiness was high.

Facts are that Nyamayevhu, who was the complainant’s gardener, would steal his employer’s money and at times replace some of the notes with counterfeit money.

Nyamayevhu stole the money since 2019 only for the employer to discover that some of his money was missing this year when he wanted to bank the it.

He realised he had US$26 000 instead of US$58 000.

US$6 900 of the money were fake 100 US dollar notes.

The matter was reported to the police and investigations led to Nyamayevhu’s arrest.

He was jointly charged with his sister who denied the charges.