BY JAIROS SAUNYAMA
POLICE in Mutawatawa, Mashonaland East, on Wednesday intercepted three trucks loaded with charcoal before arresting six men in connection with the case.
Nesbert Tatenda, Wellington Kunaka, Jacob Endesai, Osman Mapisa, Kudzanai Kasunge and Anyway Madondo, all from Harare, were arrested in Guyu and Nyanzou close to the Mozambican borders after being found in possession of charcoal loaded in three trucks.
Mashonaland East provincial police spokesperson Inspector Tendai Mwanza confirmed the arrests and said they were charged for violating the Forestry Act.
“I confirm the arrest of six Harare men who are behind a group of people behind deforestation in Mutawatawa through extracting charcoal for resale. The six were arrested for
contravening Section 29 of the Forestry Act, that is unlawfully dealing with forests produce,” Mwanza said.
According to the police, on July 3 at around 3am, officers who were on night patrol were tipped that a truck loaded with charcoal had been spotted in Guyu.
The police officers then intercepted the truck at Guyu bus stop, where a search was conducted, leading to the discovery of bags of charcoal. Two men in the truck were arrested.
Police then investigated the matter and intercepted two more trucks in Nyanzou laden with bags of charcoal before arresting four men.
Police seized a total of 350x30kg bags of charcoal.