BY MOSES MATENGA
POLICE commissioner-general Godwin Matanga has been dragged to court over “unlawful arrest” involving a former Bulgarian diplomat, who now claims the police are complicit in a case of fraud involving a local businesswoman.
In his High Court application for an order directing his unconditional release from police detention, the applicant, 68-year-old Borislav Trifonov Boynov said he had been detained by the police since April 10, 2021 without being told of any charges against him.
Through his lawyers from Mutumbwa Mugabe & Partners, Boynov, said to have been a diplomat when Bulgaria had an embassy in Zimbabwe, is also suing Assistant Inspector Patrick Matare from Avondale police station.
Boynov is employed by a Bulgarian-registered company, Technoimpex JSC, and its sister company, a German entity called Bulchimex GmbH Import-Export Chemikalien Und Produkte.
Both companies own immovable properties in Zimbabwe, which he has been managing for years.
He alleged that his company once engaged Sarah Hwingwiri, a former employee of an estate agent, to sell a property in 2013, and she registered companies with the same names Technoimpex JC (Private) Limited and Bulchimex GmbH Import Export Chemikalien Und Produkte (Private) Limited in 2016 to facilitate illegal transfer of the properties.
“It is apparent that the names of the companies resemble those of my principals in Bulgaria, who own immovable properties in Zimbabwe,” Boynov said.
“Her aim in doing this is to fraudulently transfer title in the said properties by way of simulated agreements and thereafter dispose of them to the detriment of the true owners.
“As the representative of the victim companies, I am seen as an obstacle to the success of her fraudulent scheme.”
On his “arrest”, he said: “I have not been informed of the reasons for my detention, neither have I been informed of a criminal charge that I may be facing.
“The first respondent, who is responsible for my detention, has not applied his mind to the reasons and justifications for my arrest and is acting on the directions of undisclosed superiors or acquaintances,” Boynov claimed.
He claimed harassment from police since 2016 and accused them of working under instructions from Hwingwiri.
Boynov said police harassed his security last week when they came to arrest him, adding that Hwingwiri was present in one of the April 9 afternoon raids where they harassed and arrested one of his security details.
He said he immediately called his lawyer Shingai Mutumbwa and was informed at the police station that he was being taken in for “questioning over civil litigation proceedings in the Supreme Court between his employers TechnoimpexÂ JSC and one Sarah Hwingwiri.”
Boynov said he had agreed with his lawyers and the police to meet at Avondale Police Station the following day, but was shocked that the police came back in another evening raid.
“I am a diabetic and hypertension patient with a nervous disposition,” he said.
“The events of April 9, 2021 traumatised me so much that I have been shaking unconditionally since that day and my blood sugar and blood pressure shot up.”
He said upon realising his condition was deteriorating, he advised his lawyers to alert the police that he would be unable to report to the station as promised.
“By midday on Saturday, April 10, 2021, I was still not responding to medication and I requested my medical doctor to attend to me at home.”
He said the police kept on visiting despite the communication.
“I am advised, which advice I accept, that my arrest and detention is both unlawful and unconstitutional because I have not been informed of the reasons for my arrest and detention as required at law,” he argued.