A Harare man drove away from a Zuva Service Station in Mabelreign without paying, after filling a container he was carrying with 1 000 litres of diesel, a Harare court heard yesterday.
Joseph Chirunga, 43, of Retreat Park in Waterfalls appeared before Harare magistrate Milton Serima charged with fraud.
He was released on $100 bail and ordered to continue residing at his current address and not interfere with witnesses.
Chirunga will be back in court on August 7.
The complainant is Zuva Service Station represented by Joseph Siyakurima, a fuel attendant at their Mabelreign station.
Prosecutor Linda Gadzikwa alleged that on July 9 around 4pm, Chirunga approached Siyakurima who was on duty at Zuva Service Station, Mablereign and hatched a plan to steal from him.
The court heard that Chirunga was driving a Toyota Dyna truck with a fuel tank on its trailer and told Siyakurima that he wanted to fill the tank with diesel.
When Siyakurima demanded payment before filling the tank, he was told that it would be done after they had a full price of the amount of diesel.
It was alleged that Chirunga then answered a call pretending to talk to a person he claimed was his boss and said he would cover the diesel cost.
Siyakurima filled 1 020 litres of diesel into the tank which amounted to $1 317.
Chirunga then called his boss and advised him about the amount required before requesting the service station’s merchant code.
The court heard that Chirunga’s purported boss then sent a fake confirmation of payment to Siyakurima.
Siyakurima did not thoroughly check the authenticity of the proof of payment he had received and Chirunga immediately drove from the scene, heading to town.
He reportedly transferred the fuel tank to another vehicle in a bid to conceal the offence.
The offence came to light on July 10 when Siyakurima’s boss was making daily reconciliations and discovered that there was $1 317 that could not be accounted for.
It was alleged that an Ecocash statement was obtained reflecting that Chirunga had not paid for the fuel. The matter was then reported to the police.
Investigations were made and Chirunga was apprehended while driving the same truck he had when the offence was committed.