A Bulawayo woman is facing fraud charges after misusing US$53 000 she received to buy a house for her friend based in the United Kingdom in the eastern suburbs.
Annastancia Sibanda (32) of 3 Clark Road, Suburbs in Bulawayo allegedly bought herself a house in New Magwegwe, a high-density suburb and two cars with the money.
Sibanda then forged an Agreement of Sale, took a picture of a random house in Queens Park and sent it to her friend, Mary Matewele.
The court heard that Sibanda bought herself a house in New Magwegwe for US$20 000, a Toyota Land-Cruiser and a Nissan Tilda whose values were not mentioned in court.
She then told her friend there was a shortfall of US$12 000 on the house that had to be settled in due course. Prosecuting, Terence Chakabuda said:
Annastancia later contacted Ms Matewele informing her that she had found the house in Queens Park East for US$65 000. She instructed Ms Matewele to send the money. Ms Matewele sent a total amount of US$53 000 on different occasions.
… To conceal the offence, Annastancia allegedly sent a picture of a fake Agreement of Sale claiming to have bought the house number 44 Angsely Road, Queens Park on behalf of Ms Matewele from Thembinkosi Mpofu while indicating his mobile number. She further indicated that US$12 00 was outstanding.
The matter came to light when Matewele contacted the seller, Mpofu who denied having sold his property to her.
Sibanda pleaded guilty to one count of fraud before Bulawayo magistrate Ms Rachel Mukanga, who granted her $20 000 bail.
She will appear in court on 30 March.