Man jailed 7 years for vehicle theft

Yeukai Karengezeka-Court Correspondent 

HIRING a taxi and then stealing it, triggering the dismissal of the taxi driver, has earned Prosper Moyo (34) of Harare an effective seven years in jail.

He was convicted and sentenced by Harare regional magistrate Mr Themba Kuwanda who castigated him for his cruel behaviour. 

“There was selfishness and cruelty and the accused showed that he doesn’t care about other people’s lives and their property. If people like you are given light sentences it makes the public lose confidence in the Government on its mandate to protect its citizens.”

Initially, the magistrate sentenced Moyo to 10 years in jail of which three years were suspended on condition of good behaviour.

Prosecuting, Ms Mercy Masamvi proved that on September 2 last year at around 7pm, taxi driver Tawanda Zinyenge (51) was parking his Honda Fit when he was hired by Moyo from Mbare to Ardbennie.

When Mr Zinyenge reached the intersection of Boshoff and Ardbennie Roads, Moyo told him that he had reached his destination where he wanted to collect some bags and return to Mbare. Mr Zinyenge stopped the car but Moyo asked him to accompany him on foot to collect the bags at a house nearby.

Mr Ziyenge locked his car and went with him. They had walked a short distance from the motor vehicle when suddenly, Moyo hit Mr Zinyenge with an unknown object at the back of his head and he fell down.

Moyo searched Mr Zinyenge’s trousers and took the car keys and US$20 and drove off.

The court heard on the same day, Mr Zinyenge’s friend Samson Kambara heard about the robbery and while on his way to Epworth, he spotted Mr Zinyenge’s car along Chiremba Road. 

He followed it until he reached Munyika shops in Epworth. Realising that he was being followed, Moyo ran away, leaving the vehicle.

The vehicle was recovered intact. Police then started to search for the thief by finding out who was now using the stolen cellphone and it was one Fungai Mashapaidze. She in turn led detectives to Moyo.

The total value stolen was US$4 600 and US$4,580 was recovered.

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