Zaoga church robbery suspects nabbed

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Seven suspects, who have been linked to a spate of armed heists around the city including a Zaoga church, yesterday, appeared at the Harare Magistrates’ Court facing four counts of robbery charges.

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

The suspects – Victor Kondo (32), Wilbert Mubaiwa (36), Munyaradzi Chikarara (35), Prince Nyamhanza (39), Prince Makodza (27), Taurai Dzingai (46) and Edmore Marwizi Mapuranga (40) – were not asked to plead when they appeared before magistrate Vongai Muchuchuti, who remanded them in custody to November 28 and advised them to apply for bail at the High Court.

Allegations against the suspects are that on July 18 this year at around 1am, Runesu Ushendibaba was on guard duty at the Zaoga Waterfalls church armed with a revolver when the suspects, in the company of their two accomplices namely Shadreck Madzima and Edson Marambidzi manhandled him and tied his hands using shoelaces.

They allegedly searched him and stole his gun and one of the suspects was left behind guarding him while the others proceeded to the church building where they found one Brian Mutsakani sleeping on a sofa.

They also tied him with shoelaces before robbing him of a Nokia cellphone and proceeded to the secretary’s office where they stole an HP laptop and Chubb safe containing $9 550 before leaving the place.

The State alleges on October 25 at around 2am, the suspects pounced on Kirkman Service Station, Maranatha, Mabelreign, where they confronted Londalani Kufa and Chengetai Chakawata, who are fuel attendants.

They allegedly struck the two with an axe and iron bars on their heads and knees, and dragged them behind the service station after which they stole cellphone recharge cards and $160 cash from them.

The State also alleges the gang saw Kudzai Ronald Kamukumbike disembarking from a tower in a bid to run away, but they manhandled him and stole a Galactic tablet phone before tying him with an electric cord. They then entered the service station and stole groceries and $2 500 cash before leaving the premise using their Mazda pick-up getaway car.

On November 1 it is alleged the gang proceeded to Mangura Farming Abattoir driving their Honda CVR getaway vehicle while armed with a pistol, iron bars and a mattock.

The State alleges they manhandled security guard Norman Nyamasoka and his workmate Tapiwa Mupandaguta, tied them on both legs, ransacked the premises and got away with an HP laptop, recharge cards, $5 095 cash, 120 dressed chickens and two batteries.

On November 12 police detectives from CID Homicide received information that the suspects were involved in a spate of robberies and upon arresting them they recovered a 38mm revolver with two rounds of ammunition which was traced to a robbery case committed at Rushinga Service Station on May 26 this year.

Sebastian Mutizirwa appeared for the State.