An 11-member gang comprising ex-security personnel and police officers appeared in court facing several robbery charges.
The gang consisting of Loveridge Dzimwasha, a serving cop, Panganai Munemo an ex-policeman, Zvidzai Mangwanda, an ex-member of the Air Force of Zimbabwe, Tsaurai Kupara, an ex-intelligence operative, Gawaza Definitely Anesu, Nicholas Murasira, Tafirenyika Mariga, Geselda Katema, Tapiwa Mafadze, Shepherd Chikata and Shadreck Matenga appeared before Harare magistrate Stanford Mambanje.
They were remanded in custody to today for bail consideration. The court heard that on March 10 last year, the first complainant, a Fredmap Investments truck driver, was loading a consignment destined for Mega Save Shamva and Mt Darwin branches.
It is alleged that a Geselda Fadzai Matenga approached him asking for transport to Shamva.
The driver told her that he would contact her after loading his truck.
On the same day, the driver with his 30-tonne truck loaded with 1 300 boxes of cooking oil. The driver contacted Geselda and told her to wait for him at Harare Showgrounds at 5.30 pm. It is alleged that Geselda had two 20-litre buckets containing Broncleer cough syrup.
She allegedly told the driver that she was going to Musiiwa Business Centre. When they arrived, the driver stopped and disembarked to open the door for Geselda.
He was approached by Munemo, Mangwanda and Kupara and another accomplice, Shiri, who is still at large.
They allegedly introduced themselves as police officers from the CID drugs section and accused him of transporting drugs.
The State says they bundled him into their car and drove towards Harare, but Geselda acted as if she didn’t know them, and pleaded with them to release the driver.
They took his phone and removed the battery. When they got to Mverechena Business Centre, they removed the driver’s handcuffs and handcuffed Geselda. They gave the driver his phone back and UD$10 then drove back to the truck.
They hooked up with other gang members and took the loot to Shadreck Matenga’s warehouse and later sold it to Stephen Chikata.
The driver hiked back to Musiiwa Business Centre and found his truck gone.
He later found it parked by the roadside with no load and 100litres diesel drained from the tank. On the second count, the State said on July 3 last year, Geselda used the same modus operandi with a truck driver loading 410 boxes of Irvines eggs headed for Gains Stores Marondera, Rusape and Mutare branches.
She asked the driver if he could lift her to Mutare. And he picked her up the next day at Rhodesville shops with a carrier bag.
The truck driver charged Geselda US$10, but she said she didn’t have money and requested to pay in Rusape.
The driver dropped his loads in Marondera and Rusape then requested his fare, and she asked him to park and wait for the person bringing the money.
After some hours, she then asked that they meet the person 5km outside Rusape.
They allegedly met with a gang member, Shiri.
It is alleged that as they were talking, a Toyota Wish approached them and Dzimwasha, Munemo and Mangwanda disembarked and introduced themselves as police officers from CID drugs section Rusape.
They insisted on searching the truck and claimed they had found drugs in the truck and arrested him.
They took him to Hwedza bus stop where they dumped him and joined up with other gang members.
They later sold the loot to Stephen Chikata.
Using the same modus operandi, the gang robbed the third complainant who is also a truck driver.
They also stole from three other truck drivers until they ran out of luck and were arrested.
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