Two convicted in Pomona gun heist

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Two former Zimbabwe National Army officers, Chenjerai Gwirizha and Marxist Mwaruta, were Friday convicted of theft of 20 AK-47 rifles that were stolen at Pomona Barracks two years ago.

The Pomona firearms heist was reported by Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) intelligence wing after Gwirizha had approached the head of MDC-T intelligence security wing Ray Gwezere with an offer to sell arms of war.

In his judgment, regional magistrate Morgan Nemadire said evidence against Gwirizha and Mwaruta was overwhelming and their defences were not credible.

The two will be sentenced on May 5. Prosecutor Michael Reza urged the magistrate to consider a lengthy custodial sentence of up to 25 years each.

“I have never handled a case where an accused’s moral blameworthiness is higher than this one.

“The two were waving two fingers at the State as they went for the jugular. What message were they sending to the world with regards to the security at the Zimbabwe’s armoury?

“There was a lot of planning for them to steal high-velocity guns and they deserve no mercy,” Reza submitted.

The court heard that after stealing the weapons Gwirizha and Mwaruta initially intended to sell them to armed robbers and poachers but for reasons not disclosed in court, decided to approach the MDC-T instead and offer the guns and ammunitions for sale to them.