Crime Reporter
POLICE have launched an operation targeting mobile phone dealers at Ximex Mall in Harare’s central business district and other locations in the city where stolen goods are disposed of. The operation, code-named Restore Order, began on Monday with scores of police officers having been deployed to conduct the operation.

Harare provincial police spokesperson Inspector Tadius Chibanda said criminals had invaded the mall that has been vacated to give way for a major refurbishment.

“We suspect that most of the cellphones and laptops being stolen are disposed at Ximex Mall and other places in the city. We have since launched the operation targeting these illegal dealers who are receiving stolen property,” he said.

Other targeted places include Gulf Shopping Complex, areas along Cameroon Street, Albercon Avenue and others near Magaba flyover in Mbare.

Ximex Mall had been closed but scores of people have been milling outside the premises late into the night conducting illegal deals, presumably.

However, the swoop would see the illegal traders having to account for their wares.

“There is a close link between the criminals and these illegal dealers as they buy most of the stolen goods,” he said.

The illegal dealers also block the free movement of people, an offence in itself.

Insp Chibanda said the operation would continue until there was sanity in and around the city.

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