In a shocking incident, three armed robbers targeted a businessman at his residence in Mahatshula suburb, allegedly making off with US$6,000 and P110,000.
They also reportedly gave a traditional healer a sum of P1,800 as a gesture of gratitude. The accused individuals, Elvis Charapuka (38), Mlingiseli Sibanda (44), and Bhekimpilo Ncube (35), recently stood trial before Bulawayo regional magistrate Dambudzo Malunga. The trio pleaded not guilty and were remanded out of custody to 25 October.
During the trial, the businessman, George Kudya (42), who also serves as the managing director for Star Distributors, took the stand for cross-examination. Kudya recounted the incident, stating that on the fateful day, he arrived home before 7 pm. As he was getting out of his Toyota Hilux, Charapuka, Sibanda, and Ncube swiftly approached him, forcibly restraining him while brandishing a firearm.
According to Kudya’s testimony, the assailants physically assaulted him and demanded money. Fearing for his life, he surrendered US$6,000. Subsequently, they proceeded to his vehicle and seized P110,000 before fleeing in their own car.
A traditional healer, Gogo Otilia Murombedzi, also testified in court, revealing that Charapuka used to visit her at her residence in Cowdray Park suburb for consultations and to acquire good luck charms. She confirmed that Charapuka had given her P1,800 as a token of appreciation. However, she explained that she could not use the money as her ancestral spirits communicated to her in a dream, warning her that the funds were tainted.
Concillia Ncube represented the State in the proceedings.