Soldier in court for robbing forex dealers

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

A 29-YEAR-OLD serving Zimbabwe National Army officer yesterday appeared before a Harare magistrate facing two counts of robbery after he teamed up with two accomplices to rob foreign currency dealers in Chitungwiza.

Norest Nyasoro, who is based at Manyame Airbase, was charged together with Tichaona Sosera (27) and Mafeking Tagara (24) when the trio appeared before magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa.

Mugwagwa remanded the trio in custody and advised them to apply for bail at the High Court.

It is the State’s case that on January 19, the accused approached a 20-year-old forex dealer purporting to be interested in changing their bond notes into United States dollars.

They allegedly lured the complainant into their vehicle and they immediately told the complainant that he was under arrest for illegally dealing in forex.

The trio allegedly searched the complainant and took $640 and R400.

After committing the offence, the accused pushed the complainant out of their vehicle and drove away.

This month, the complainant spotted the trio’s vehicle and immediately alerted the police.

The complainant managed to identify the trio and they were arrested.

The State further alleges that on January 30 this year, the trio hatched a plan to rob unsuspecting foreign currency dealers at Zengeza Shopping Complex.

They approached the complainant Ophias Chinomona and told him that they wanted to change their money into US$.

The State alleges they told the complainant that they were going to meet the following day after he had sourced the money.

On the following day, Sosera contacted the complainant on his mobile phone inquiring on his whereabouts.

The complainant directed Sosera where he was.

Chinomona met the accused persons at Zesa offices in Zengeza and the trio were driving a Toyota IST vehicle.

The complainant got into the trio’s vehicle, which was being driven by Sosera and they drove off while confirming the exchange rate with other forex
dealers.

It is alleged the trio told the complainant that he was under arrest for dealing in foreign currency.

The accused persons told the complainant that they were soldiers conducting an operation targeting foreign currency dealers.

The accused persons allegedly produced an army uniform to instil fear into the complainant.

The State alleges the accused persons assaulted the complainant several times and took away his money.

In total, they took US$1 700 and R50 from him. After committing the offence, they stopped their vehicle and pushed the complainant out.

The detectives recovered US$127 and a complete army uniform from the suspects, upon their arrest.

Sebastian Mutizirwa appeared for the State.

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