By Fortunate Gora
Three armed robbers, who targeted pirate taxi drivers along the Harare-Chirundu Highway robbing them of their vehicles, goods and money, have been sentenced to 12 years in prison each.
The trio will, however, spend the next 10 years behind bars after Chinhoyi Regional Magistrate Mr Amos Mbobo set aside two years on condition that the convicts will not commit a similar offence in the next five years.
James Mbizi (32), Luckmore Mubaiwa (31) and Daniel Bhobho (30) were not asked to plead when they appeared before Mr Mbobo, but were convicted after a full trial.
In mitigation, the trio pleaded for leniency arguing that they were unemployed and orphans.
Bhobho argued that his parents were deceased and there was no one who would look after his children while Mbizi claimed that his wife was ill and needed to be looked after.
However, Regional Magistrate Mbobo said the three were adults and had turned themselves into monsters in society who deserved a lengthy sentence for disturbing the peace in communities.
“Armed robbery is a very serious offence. You destabilised the peace of the community so you deserve a lengthy sentence because you behaved inhumanly,” he said.
During the trial, prosecutor Mr Trustmore Mukarati told the court that on August 9 this year, the trio hired Norman Gahadza (42) to take them from Karoi to Buffalo Downs claiming that they wanted to take their ill mother for treatment at Chinhoyi Provincial Hospital.
Gahadza charged them $35 and along the way they told the driver that their mother had been moved to Tengwe before offering to add another $10. The Herald