TWELVE suspected robbers have been arrested in Chinhoyi after raiding Chidamoyo Mission Hospital in Hurungwe and making off with over US$1 500 and $3 000, among other valuables this week.
The incident occurred at around 4am on Tuesday.
Sources close to the investigations said the gang first went to Sister Cathy McCarthy’s house before they force marched her to the hospital at gunpoint where they demanded cash. Sister McCarthy and two other security guards were left lying on the ground about 500 metres away from the hospital.
The robbers’ luck ran out when they were arrested the same day by the security services manning numerous roadblocks along the Harare-Chirundu Highway.
They are Ishmael Neboet Zibula (29) of Mabutheni, Bulawayo, Spencer Chigondo (29) of Ruwa, Harare, Ruka Matemai Bitone (39) of Unit M Seke, Chitungwiza, James Bhebhe alias Mitewell Moyo (29) of Sukani, Lower Gweru, Trust Hapanyengwi (31) of Tazvivinga village under Chief Chirimanzu, Mighty Nyoni (34) of Emakhandeni, Bulawayo, Chadmore Chakaingesu (42) of Seke, Chitungwiza, Tozivei Kunyangamara (42) of Banket, Casten Kamuchira (38) Dzivaresekwa 2, Harare, Clinton Mazwimaviri (52) of Glen Forest, Harare, Stewart Kasenda (36) of Karoi and Tawanda Magaya (24) of Kuwadzana Extension, Harare.
The gang, which was armed with two CZ pistols with eight rounds each and two AK-47 assault rifles loaded with 30 rounds each went to the hospital, while travelling in a blue Ford Ranger T6 double-cab.
They threatened to shoot Sister McCarthy.
The gang allegedly took the safe containing US$1 500 cash and other valuables and escaped from the scene without firing a shot.
A report was then made to the police who manned the security roadblocks and the gang was later intercepted in Chinhoyi.
Police recovered the two pistols and the AK-47 rifles in their getaway vehicle.
Investigations are still in progress.
Armed robbers have been a nuisance in the last few months.
In May, police arrested seven people for allegedly robbing two gold miners of R11 500 and 600kg gold ore in Maphisa, Matabeleland South Province, while armed with firearms, machetes and axes.
Earlier this year, armed robbers pounced on illegal money changers operating at Makoni Shopping Centre in Chitungwiza where they made off with cash and a vehicle belonging to two brothers.
The vehicle was later found abandoned near Glen View Police Station.
After the Makoni heist, another gang of armed robbers pounced on businessman Tawanda Nyambirai and Rodney Dangarembizi whom they robbed of over US$220 000.