Abel Zhakata Senior Crime Reporter
A NOTORIOUS five-member gang of Mozambican armed robbers who broke into several houses and raped women on 21 different occasions in Mutare’s low-suburbs used juju to try and evade arrest and foil dog tracking each time they made a hit.
This was revealed by one of the suspects, Ernest Chirara, following his recent arrest by police in the neighbouring country after he had committed a different assault crime.
After getting wind of his arrest, a team of detectives from Mutare Central comprising Inspector Nyakuwanikwa, Ass Insp Nyamawere and Constable Nkomo travelled to Mozambique and went to Manica District Police Headquarters.
With the blessings of Chief Inspector Geraldo the District Director of National Investigation Services, the Mutare team was given the opportunity to interview Chirara.
During the interviews he admitted to have committed the offences together with other four accomplices. The gang’s ring leader was arrested last year while the three other suspects are still on the run.
Chirara told the detectives that they targeted any house in the low-density suburbs where there was a satellite dish. He also revealed that the gang used juju to evade arrest and dog tracking.
The detectives have since applied for an extradition order with the Mozambican authorities to have Chirara be taken to Zimbabwe to answer charges of committing 21 rape and armed robbery cases in Mutare.
Chirara (32) who comes from Manica province is one of the five suspects who unleashed a reign of terror late last year by orchestrating a spate of robberies, break-ins and sexual abuse crimes that ravaged residents in the eastern border city’s low-density suburbs.
The criminals troubled law enforcement agents because each time they pounced on unsuspecting residents they took the loot to Mozambique through illegal crossing points along the porous border.
The gang’s alleged kingpin, Domingo Luiz Zuze, was arrested last year in Zimbabwe and is currently jailed at Mutare Remand Prison.
Chirara was on the run together with Joao Antonio Amisi, Kuda and Takudzwa.