POLICE in Kwekwe last week arrested Panashe Masekera (20) and Mathwe Mawino alias Mawindo (37), both of no fixed abode, after they allegedly terrorised Kwekwe residents and miners around the Midlands city for weeks.
Various brand new clothing items they were selling were recovered, including a spear and a leather whip.
Both suspects have since appeared before a Kwekwe magistrate facing six counts of robbery, assault and threatening complainants with spears.
After the arrest, the police discovered that Mawino was wanted in Gweru for various other crimes.
According to a police report, on October 23, 2020, police were on surveillance around Hard Rock Mine in Kwekwe after receiving information that Panashe and Garikai Masekera, who managed to escape were selling stolen property to unsuspecting customers at the compound. The police swooped on the robbers and recovered goods worth over
US$1 000 and the weapons.
It is alleged the trio would waylay traders, travellers or pounce on various compounds and assault the victims, threatening them with spears before robbing them of cash and other valuables.
In a separate incident, on November 5, 2020, police arrested Mike Chitupa (40) of 129 Section 7 in Mtapa, Gweru, Mkhulule Ncube (34) of house number 6692 Pumula North in Bulawayo and Sithandekile Ncube (35) of house number 6194 Lundi Park, Gweru, for theft from motor vehicles in Kwekwe.
Midlands police provincial spokesperson Inspector Joel Goko, confirmed both incidents.
Police were tipped that the trio, which was driving a Honda Accord with no registration numbers, had been captured by a CCTV camera at TM Pick n Pay Supermarket Kwekwe committing a series of offences.
They went to the suspects and identified themselves, but the suspects attempted to speed off from the scene.
One police officer who was armed with a CZ pistol shot the vehicle‘s rear left tyre, leading to the suspects’ arrest.
Upon searching their vehicle, police recovered a knife, two electric devices which interfere with vehicle locking systems, two plastic sachets containing a suspected traditional medicine and two homemade implements which were being used to forcibly open locked vehicle doors.
It alleged that on November 1, the suspects unlocked a Honda Fit vehicle in the Kwekwe central business district after the owner entered into the shop and they stole various goods valued at US$500.
The incident was captured on CCTV. The suspects are also linked to a theft from a Nissan NP300 pick-up truck that was parked at Junky yard in Kwekwe.
After the owner went to buy beer, they broke the driver’s window and stole a bag containing US$2 200.They were positively identified on CCTV after the arrest.