Patients murdered in insurance scam

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Chief police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba

Police have arrested a Kwekwe General Hospital nurse and her boyfriend as they widen investigations
into a case in which patients were drugged and killed before their identification particulars were used
to claim insurance cover from Old Mutual Life Assurance Company.One of the victims is now having to
be exhumed as part of investigations. Apart from the case for which the nurse Renica Chakabvapasi
(30) and her boyfriend Godwin Takarwa Mugwangi (48) are assisting police with investigations, there
are two similar cases that occurred last year. The lovebirds were arrested while claiming money
following the death of Lee Mazarire (26).
The deceased’s relatives, with the assistance of the police, were yesterday in the process of exhuming
the body for further investigations. The body is expected to undergo another post­mortem.
Chief police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba yesterday said on the two
cases that occurred last year, Mugwangi claimed insurance cover for two deceased persons using the
same modus operandi.
“The two are still in custody and as police, we are still investigating the case to ascertain whether the
deceased (Mazarire) died as a result of the tablets she was given by Chakabvapasi or not.
Investigations have also revealed that there are two similar cases, which occurred last year involving
the same accused persons.”
In an interview last night, Mazarire’s aunt Mrs Evelyn Simbanegavi said, they were at the cemetery
exhuming Mazarire’s body. “We are busy here digging Lee’s grave at Kwekwe section 10 cemetery.
The police are exhuming his body for post­mortem to ascertain what exactly caused his death,” she
said.
“As family, we are 100 percent sure that Lee was killed by this woman because she went to his house
and gave him a certain pill and suddenly his health deteriorated and he died a few hours later at the
hospital.”

She added, “Lee was once admitted at Kwekwe General Hospital and Chakabvapasi befriended him
such that even after he was discharged from hospital, she would visit him at home with her boyfriend
pretending to be good Samaritans. They then stole his identification particulars, which they used to
open a cash back funeral plan for him with Old Mutual Life Assurance Company.”
Mrs Simbanegavi said when the policy matured, the pair allegedly gave Mazarire a certain pill which
they believe killed him, and proceeded to Old Mutual Life Assurance Company, where they claimed $5
000 on the pretext they were his relatives.
According to the police, the offence was discovered by Old Mutual officials who then made a report
after Mazarire’s relatives distanced themselves from the two accused persons. Mazarire’s aunt claimed
that when police raided Chakabvanepasi’s house, they found various types of pills, injections,
identification particulars for different people and insurance policy forms.
There are also unconfirmed reports that three more people believed to have been “killed” by the
suspects, are going to be exhumed for post­mortem. Chakabvapasi and Mugwangi appeared before a
Kwekwe magistrate Mr Ngoni Nduna on Monday charged with fraud.
They are likely to face murder charges once investigations are complete. Prosecutor, Mr Simeleni
Nkala, alleged that Chakabvapasi in the course of her duty, would identify some terminally ill patients
admitted at Kwekwe General Hospital and use them to swindle Old Mutual Life Assurance Company.
It is the State’s case that she would then secretly obtain their particulars, which she would supply to
her boyfriend Mugwangi who would use them to open cash back insurance policies without the
knowledge of the beneficiaries.
They allegedly stole Mazarire’s particulars and Mugwangi claimed that he was his cousin before
opening a cash back funeral plan for him when in fact they were not related.
Mazarire died on September 6, and Chakabvapasi is alleged to have speedily facilitated the acquisition
of a burial order, which she in turn handed over to Mugwangi who claimed $5 000 from the insurance
company. – The Herald

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