‘Prophet’ gets 28 years for armed robbery
By Thupeyo Muleya
A self-proclaimed prophet and his 17-year-old aide have been jailed for 28 and 18 years respectively for masterminding an armed robbery at Jalukanga Business Centre, some 120km west of Beitbridge town last week.
The two raided a shop last Saturday armed with an AK47 assault rifle and shot two people, killing one of them.
After robbing the shop they also sprayed the business centre with 25 bullets before disappearing into the bush.
The ‘prophet’, Christopher Chamisa (26) was slapped with 12 years on each of the two counts of armed robbery and two years for illegal possession of a firearm, when he appeared before regional magistrate Mr Mark Dzira.
His aide, who cannot be named because he is a minor, was slapped with 18 years imprisonment for both two counts of armed robbery and one of illegal possession of a firearm.
He was left with 12 years effective to serve after six years were conditionally set aside for five years.
They were both convicted on their own plea of guilty in a fast-tracked trial held in Gwanda last week.
The two men are from Maranda area in Masvingo province.
They are yet to stand trial at the High Court on a charge of murder and another at the magistrates’ court for illegal possession of 200 bullets which were recovered from them.
Prosecuting, Mr Mncedisi Dube alleged that on May 27, the two men, who were known to be members of the Johanne Masowe Church and were in the habit of moving around with the riffle concealed in a reed mat, went to Jalukanga Shopping Centre at around 4pm, where they bought refreshments in one of the shops.
They then left but came back armed with the AK47 rifle, which they used to shoot the two victims.
One of the victims, Dion Muleya (48), was shot in the stomach, while the bar tender, Perseculia Singo, was hit in the back.
They stole a cash box containing R6 000 at Jalukanga Special Shop and two cellphones.
Mr Dube said they also fired 25 shots at the scene before vanishing into the bush.
Muleya and Singo were later rushed to Beitbridge District Hospital, where the former was referred to United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) where he died due to gunshot wounds.
The matter was reported to police who arrested the ‘prophet’ and his aide on May 29 around the same area.
The firearm, 25 spent cartridges and three bullet heads, cash (R2 300, US$32 and $153 in bond notes) were recovered from the two men.
Further investigations led to the recovery of 200 more bullets from accused persons. The Herald