'I'd like my 8kg of diamonds back now, please'

A Zimbabwean man is appealing to the country’s high court for the return of $300-million worth of diamonds that disappeared from the court that wrongly convicted him of illegally possessing the precious stones.

Newman Chiadzwa (55) was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison over the possession of 43 028 carats of diamonds. The high court quashed the sentence earlier this year, prompting Chiadzwa to approach prosecutors, who used the diamonds as an exhibit during his trial.

According to magistrates, the diamonds, weighing a total of 8.61kg, had been handed over to mines ministry officials.

However, Chiadzwa’s defence lawyers said Tuesday they had had no luck getting them back from the ministry.

Zimbabwe diamonds are not new to controversies.

Aside from claims of human rights abuses committed by the army during the mining process, the country’s finance minister has said over $100-million realised from the auction of diamonds last year were still not accounted for.—Sapa-dpa

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