Senior Court Reporter
The robbery of US$2,775 million and $43 000 from a cash-in-transit ZB Bank vehicle along Harare-Chinhoyi Road on Wednesday is believed to be an inside job where three security personnel in the vehicle allegedly connived with robbers.
As a result, the three security staff — who have since been arrested — are expected to appear in court today charged with theft after a warrant allowing for longer police detention was granted yesterday.
Nomatter Jonga (43), Mathew Simango (66) and Fanuel Musakwa (34) appeared at the Harare Magistrates’ Courts yesterday where the State applied for their warrant for further detention in police custody.
The State, led by Mr Lancelot Mutsokoti, told magistrate Mrs Barbra Mateko that the police wanted to continue with investigations and reconcile the version of how the incident occurred since the three were giving different versions of what transpired when they were allegedly robbed.
Mrs Mateko granted the warrant of detention up to today.
The State alleges that on Wednesday at around 11.30am, the three were tasked to carry seven boxes containing US$2 775 000.
This cash was to be ferried to ZB branches — Chinhoyi US$75 000, Kadoma US$25 000, Kwekwe and Gweru US$150 000 each, Bulawayo US$200 000, Gwanda US$50 000 and Zvishavane US$100 000.
They were travelling in a Toyota Hilux single cab with a canopy, secured with a tracker and emergency panic button.
The initial allegations given in court were that the three hatched a plan to steal the money and connived with six others, who are still at large.
It is alleged that Jonga, Simango and Musakwa picked three unknown suspects at the Westgate roundabout in Harare and drove to Inkomo tollgate where they collected a box containing $43 090, which was supposed to be deposited at the bank, and then picked up three more men at Inkomo Barracks turn-off as they drove towards Chinhoyi.
Upon reaching the 60km peg, Jonga stopped the vehicle and a fake robbery was staged.
The State alleges that an Isuzu twin-cab immediately arrived at the scene with people who were armed with pistols.
Jonga, Simango and Musakwa surrendered their pistol and rifle before driving their Toyota Hilux for about 900 metres where the gang offloaded the cash boxes into the Isuzu which then drove off.
Jonga, Simango and Musakwa are expected back in court today for their initial remand.