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Zimbabwe releases plane with SARB cash

After a dead body discovered on board.
Zimbabwean authorities released a cargo plane carrying a consignment of rand notes for the South African Reserve Bank and cleared the crew of any wrongdoing.

“The plane left early this morning” for South Africa, Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said by phone on Saturday. A dead body discovered on board was still considered a suspected stowaway, she said.

The aircraft, owned by US cargo carrier Western Global Airlines, had been at the airport in Harare, the capital, since Sunday. The plane was traveling to South Africa from Germany and had landed in the southern African nation to refuel when the body was discovered. The SARB confirmed that the currency on the plane had arrived in South Africa and is now under its possession.

A small percentage of South Africa’s banknotes are printed outside of the country as part of the central bank’s contingency plans, the SARB said on Tuesday, without disclosing how much money was on the plane.

“The process of printing South African currency abroad, and the transporting thereof is part of the normal course of currency operations and business contingency planning,” Pradeep Maharaj, an executive in the currency cluster at the SARB, said in an e-mailed statement on Saturday.

©2016 Bloomberg News

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