BY NKOSENTSHA KHUMALO
A 43-year old man from Gwanda ‘s Magwe Irrigation Scheme under Chief Mathe and his accomplices have been accused of raiding Poly Packaging Pvt Ltd in Bulawayo at gunpoint and getting away with US$105 410.
The robbery allegedly happened on November 13 last year.
Nkosilathi Ncube from Metropolitan flat, Alexander Street Johannesburg in South Africa, pleaded not guilty to the armed robbery charges when he appeared before Bulawayo regional magistrate Dambudzo Malunga on Wednesday.
Malunga remanded him in custody to next Monday for continuation of trial.
Prosecutor Naison Chivayo told the court that on November 13, 2020 at 9:30am, Ncube who was in the company of two accomplices who are still at large went to Poly Packaging at Josiah Chimanamo road, Belmont armed with pistols.
On arrival they attacked a Fawcett security guard, Thandolwenkosi Dube, who was manning the main entrance, while one of them remained behind guarding him while they entered the premises and forced open the cashier’s office.
One of them jumped through an open window and gained entry into the office and found Anna Nheta inside.
He slapped her twice on the face, pointed a pistol at her, and opened the locked office door using the keys which he found hanging on the door.
They allegedly force-marched Nheta into the manager’s office where they found the manager, Conditioner Vavashe (30) with another employee Kudzaishe Chabvutagondo and threatened to shoot them and demanded cash and keys to the safe.
The robbers then allegedly took an unlocked small safe which was inside the big safe and emptied all the money into Vavashe’s handbag.
They stole a gold Samsung S7 Galaxy cellphone and then demanded car keys of a Toyota Corolla which they had found parked outside the company premises.
They also disarmed the security guard, Norman Mapfumbe of his service pistol, and a 38 special Rossi revolver.
The robbers locked the company officials into a storeroom before fleeing with the cash in the Toyota Corolla vehicle.
The same day at around 1pm, the stolen vehicle was found dumped at corner Fairbridge way and Blake road, Malindela.
Police from the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) crime team attended the scene and uplifted the fingerprints from the vehicle; they also recovered car keys inside a blue overall which was found from the scene.
Investigations by police led to Ncube’s arrest while the other two accomplices are still at large and warrants of arrest have been issued on them.