Fake traditional healers arrested in ‘tokoloshi’ scam

​The alleged goblin

Three Zimbabweans have been dragged before the Broadhurst Magistrate Court in Botswana for allegedly masquerading as traditional healers. They are alleged to have planted a dead baboon in a woman's yard and then charged her P1,000 claiming their powers had "discovered" and removed it.
The trio is facing two counts of attempting to obtain by false pretences as well as entering Botswana through an un-gazetted point.
Prosecutors say Gift Chihwayi (27), Phillip Rusari (39) and Emmanuel Chihwayi (42) all residing at Rasoko ward, Gabane village, acted in consent on 13 October 2017 at Phiring location in Gaborone to try and obtain the sum of P1,000 from Linet Mmali David by falsely pretending that they were traditional doctors.
The three told David that they had removed a goblin from her house, which prosecutors say they knew was false as they had planted the dead baboon.
After the three were arrested last Friday, police confiscated the baboon which had been hidden in the victim's yard in Phiring.
Representing the State before Broadhurst magistrate, Gaseitsewe Tonoki, detective senior superintendent Sergeant Marapo told the court that the baboon had been taken to the Department of Wildlife to ascertain whether it was indeed an ape.
He opposed the trio's application for bail, saying the matter was still fresh as "investigations had only just begun," and that the three were highly likely to abscond.
"Investigations into the matter are still at initial stage and all of the accused persons are illegal immigrants and if granted bail, we suspect they might flee the country through un-gazetted entry points, like they used coming in," Marapo said.
The three chose to represent themselves, although the court gave them the right to have their own attorneys.
Asked if they understood the charges, Chihwayi and Rusari said they did, but had nothing further to say. Emmanuel, however, told court that he did not understand the charge laid against him because he had not committed any offence.
"I was not even at the crime scene," he said.
However, magistrate Tonoki interrupted, advising him that court proceedings were only at the stage of asking the accused whether they understood the charges, and not asking them to plead.
It was then that all the accused agreed to have understood the charge. All three were denied bail after the magistrate pointed out that they do not have passports and are thus illegal immigrants.
The trio will appear again on October 30.-Online. TOP NEWS

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