Police in Gwanda have arrested two members of an infamous machete-wielding syndicate who allegedly attacked two miners, getting away with 460 kilogrammes of gold ore and three cellphones, state media reported.
The duo of 30-year-old Michael Gambiza of Filabusi and Nkosinamandla Ncube (20) of Mberengwa, were not asked to plead guilty following their appearance before Gwanda magistrate Ndumiso Khumalo, charged with armed robbery, yesterday.
The suspected robbers were remanded in custody to July 17.
Prosecutor Silent Shoko told the court that the two, together with their other two accomplices who are still at large, went to Marble Mine in Gwanda armed with machetes, axes, knobkerries and catapults on July 1 at around 2AM.
According to Shoko, upon arrival at Marble mine, the criminal quartet forced open a steel cabin door in the pursuit of gaining entrance into the mine before they reportedly assaulted two mine workers who were at the premises.
The court heard that the four-member machete gang ordered the two mine workers to lie down and tied their hands and legs using a safety belt which was inside the room.
“The gang further stole three cellphones which were in the room before loading about 460kgs of gold ore into a truck which they had parked outside and then fled the scene. The gang proceeded with the stolen gold ore to Hammer Mill in Dubane area to have it processed,” Shoko said.
Following a tip-off that the accused criminals were at Hammer Mill, he said, the police tracked them, leading to the arrest of the duo where they recovered the looted ore and the cellphones.
Machete wielding assailants have, in the past, hogged the media limelight for all the wrong reasons with bloody clashes becoming the order the day.
Infamously referred to as ‘MaShurugwi’, the machete gangs are more pronounced in various mining parts of the country, notably the Midlands and some parts of the Matabeleland region.
Additional Reporting: Zwnews