Armed robbers who masqueraded as police detectives and unleashed a reign of terror in Mutare, pouncing on innocent civilians, have been sentenced to a total of 12 years in prison each.
The two, Stanely Chimunda (26) and John Claudius Mutrizwa (28) are a former soldier and police officer respectively.
They robbed their victims of various goods and money worth approximately $5 600, R20 900 and Econet recharge cards after producing stolen police identity cards.
They were both convicted by Mutare regional magistrate Livingstone Chipadze on two counts of robbery and three counts of impersonation.
They were slapped with nine years for robbery and two were suspended on condition of good behaviour.
For presenting themselves as police detective, Chimunda was sentenced to 12 months while his accomplice was sentenced to 36 months.
The State submitted that on September 27 this year, the two went to Mudzviti bus terminus where they pretended they wanted to exchange US dollars for the South African rand from money changers.
They took Daniel Chingunde and Taurai Taurai into a taxi where they later produced stolen IDs misrepresenting themselves as members from the Criminal Intelligent Unit from Harare.
They allegedly told the pair that they were under arrest.
On their way to ZRP guardroom at Sakubva bus terminus, the robbers produced a pistol and demanded the two surrender their money which amounted to $5 600 and R20 900.
They handed the two to the police saying they would return later for them. On the other three counts, they falsely represented themselves as police detectives, approached airtime vendors and accused them of selling recharge cards unlawfully.
They dragged three vendors into a police guardroom where they took the cards and money before ordering them to pay fines. Chimunda was arrested at his girlfriend’s house in Dangamvura after police established he was not a genuine member of the force while his co-accused was nabbed in Rusape on his way to Harare.
In passing sentence Chipadze said the pair was a threat to the general public hence a deterrent sentence was appropriate. Malvern Musarurwa prosecuted.