Mnangagwa’s niece Henrietta Rushwaya convicted for trying to smuggle US$300k gold to Dubai
Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF) president Henrietta Rushwaya who is also President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s niece has been convicted for attempting to smuggle 6kg of gold worth US$333,000 to Dubai through the Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport.
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said the prominent golder dealer has been remanded in custody to November 10 for sentencing.
“The President of the Zimbabwe Miners Federation Henrietta Rushwaya has been convicted of smuggling 6kg of gold.
“Rushwaya who is appearing in the Anti-Corruption Court at the High Court of Harare was caught red handed at the Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport whilst smuggling gold valued at USD333 042.28 out of the country to Dubai.
“She has been detained in custody pending sentence which will be handed down on the 10th of November 2023,” the NPA said.
Rushwaya was arrested on October 26 2020 at the Harare Airport when four bars of gold weighing six kilogrammes were found in her possession enroute to Dubai.
She tried to tell the court that she picked a wrong bag.
The ZMF president was indicted to the High Court for trial early this year where her accomplices two Central Intelligence Organisation operatives Stephen Tserai and Raphios Mufandauya, were acquitted of the charges for lack of evidence at the close of the State case.
It was the prosecution’s case that Rushwaya failed to provide a valid export permit and presented a fake invoice and packing list from a company called Ali Japan 786 (Pvt) Limited.
Rushwaya was found in possession of a handbag containing 6kg of gold valued at approximately US$333,000.
Rushwaya was acquitted last year in a bribery case linked to the same smuggling allegations and she had told court in her defence that she had collected a wrong bag which had gold instead of another bag which had her particulars.
Few months after her arrest, Rushwaya’s former aide and driver Tashinga Nyasha Masinire was also arrested at OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, South Africa, after being found with 23 pieces of gold worth R11m (US$783 000).
He was later granted R100 000 bail at Kempton Park Regional Court in Joburg.
Zimbabwe is losing billions through smuggling of precious stones and money laundering.