HARARE – A suspected car thief was apprehended while repainting a stolen vehicle at his Harare home, a court heard on Thursday.

Kudakwashe Matonhodze, 27, of Kuwadzana Extension, was not asked to plead when he briefly appeared before Harare magistrate Judith Taruvinga, who remanded him in custody to August 25.

The court heard that Tawanda Chibanda, also of Kuwadzana Extension, was unloading groceries from a silver Toyota Quantum outside his home at about 2AM on July 31 when he was accosted by six men, including Matonhodze.

They allegedly tied him up and drove away before dumping him roadside.

Chibanda finally managed to untie himself and made a report at Kuwadzana Police Station.

The National Prosecuting Authority says Chibanda received information that the individuals who stole his vehicle were Matonhodze and accomplices only known as Mwene, Shine, Madzibaba, Shuto and Tafadzwa. The latter five are all still at large.

Chibanda, the court heard, proceeded to Matonhodze’s residence and found him repainting the vehicle to change its colour.

He teamed up with Matonhodze’s neighbours and effected a citizen’s arrest before calling police.

The vehicle was recovered with a missing battery, which was later recovered from one Musafare Chidukutse.