CITY Football Academy founder, Agripa Guti, is facing charges of defrauding parents who intended to send their children for trials with Manchester City.
He posed as an agent of the English champions.
Guti (35) appeared before Harare magistrate Dennis Mangosi.
The court heard that in 2022, the first complainant, Cuthbert Chitima, wanted his son to go for football trials abroad.
Chitima met Guti at Alexandra Sports Club.
The State said during their conversation, Guti indicated he could facilitate a place for Chitima’s son at Manchester City Satellite Youth Training Facility.
Guti claimed the trials would be held sometime between June 2022 and December 2023 for a cost of US$2 000, and Chitima paid the amount in full.
He allegedly gave Chitima a fake invitation letter in June last year.
But officials in Dubai, where the trials were scheduled to be held, denied that Chitima’s son had been invited when Guti, Chitima and his son arrived at the Manchester City Training Facilities.
They further disowned the Manchester City logo on the invitation letter, prompting Chitima to suspect he had been duped.
Guti promised to pay back the money but never did.
This led Chitima to file a police report leading to his arrest.
The State said Guti also defrauded Justice Nyevhe of US$2 500, Didymus Mandinenga of US$930 and Egton Tsuronzuma of US$3 800 using the same scheme.
Thomas Chanakira appeared for the State.