Police have expressed concern over an increase in armed robbery cases at mining sites where criminals are targeting artisanal miners and individuals who are keeping large amounts of cash and gold ore.
Police have since increased surveillance and monitoring activities at mining sites.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said miners should be wary of armed gangs who were on the prowl.
“Mine owners and management are urged to step up security at their premises. We urge members of the public to keep telephone contacts of their nearest police stations or provincial operations for swift reports of all criminal activities in communities,” he said.
Early on Tuesday morning, seven robbers who were covering their faces with balaclavas and armed with machetes, raided Orobredo 11 Mine in Battlefields.
They broke into a cabin in which seven artisanal miners were sleeping in before they assaulted them with the machetes and chains, demanding cash and valuables.
Four of the miners sustained severe injuries which include deep cuts on their bodies and were taken to Kadoma District Hospital for treatment. The gang got away with US$905 and six cellphones.
In another case, eight armed robbers attacked a 40-year-old man at M and A Kiosk Mine in Filabusi on November 20 while he was attending to his pumps at a carbon tank.
“The suspects got away with 200kgs of non-pregnant carbon valued at US$160. Another robbery case occurred at Shangani Mine Compound, Fort Rixon on 19th November.
“A 26-year-old man went to the bush to relieve himself and was attacked by Terrence Masango (23) who had a machete,” Ass Comm Nyathi said.
He said Masango, who has since been arrested, took the complainant’s wallet containing US$90.
In Chinhoyi, eight robbers confronted a security guard who was manning the premises at Eldorado Mine on November 13.
They took the guard’s firearm, tied him up with electric cables before looting gold loaded wire wools worth US$82 915 and the security guard’s cellphone.
The shotgun was later recovered by police dumped at the 110km peg along the Harare-Chirundu Highway.