A self-proclaimed prophet blew the cover on police constable Dingumuzi Ncube (35), who has since been arrested for theft of gold worth nearly $1 million from an armoury at Plumtree Police Station in Matabeleland South Province.
Ncube had consulted the prophet in a bid to be prayed for so that he could have powers to evade arrest.
He gave the prophet 8kg of the gold as a thank you. After arresting Ncube following the tip-off from the prophet, police have since launched a manhunt for a senior officer in connection with the theft of the gold.
Sources said the prophet was approached by Ncube on Thursday, a day after it was discovered that the gold was missing.
The stolen gold weighing 28,5kg worth more than $970 000, was being kept as an exhibit at the station since September 2015.
The gold was recovered by members of the Police Border Control and Minerals Unit, who intercepted a man at Plumtree Border Post as he allegedly attempted to smuggle it into Botswana.
Police chief national spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba confirmed Ncube’s arrest. She said another police officer suspected to be involved in the theft was on the run.
Snr Asst Comm Charamba said she could not give details on the matter as that would jeopardise investigations.
“I can confirm that a police officer has been arrested in connection with the theft of 28,5kg of gold at Plumtree Police Station,” she said.
“The suspect is assisting police with investigations and unfortunately at the moment I can’t give more information as this will jeopardise investigations.”
Ncube, according to sources, had allegedly bought three brand new vehicles, a Quantum, a Toyota Wish and a Toyota Regius.
The sources said police have since recovered $37 000 and 3kgs of gold following Ncube’s arrest. The theft of the gold was discovered on Wednesday at around 11am by officers who were on duty.
Sources at the police station said the theft came to light as police officers were searching for two missing rifles that had been booked in the charge office. When an officer went to check at the armoury for the missing rifles, he was surprised to find the armoury door not locked.
The sources said when the officer was about to open the armoury, he observed that there was a key inserted on the key hole of the door.
“One of the officers who had knowledge about the gold kept in the armoury as an exhibit proceeded to the bucket where the gold weighing 28,5kg was kept wrapped in a khaki paper and discovered that the gold was missing,” said a source.
The gold was seized from a suspect identified as Pudohope James Rove, who had hidden it in a secret compartment in his vehicle’s loading box. The suspect was driving a Toyota Hilux and was on his way to Botswana when he was intercepted at the exit gate after completing all immigration and Zimbabwe Revenue Authority formalities.
Detectives who were on duty stopped the vehicle and conducted a search. They discovered a false compartment in the loading box and upon carrying further searches, discovered 76 pieces of smelted gold which weighed 28,5kg.