THE case of the five suspected armed robbers who stormed an ex-detective’s home in Harare before three of them were gunned down in a shootout on Monday night has taken a new twist amid reports that the criminals had gone to a “wrong target”.
Police yesterday said investigations had established that the suspects ended up at former detective Joseph Nemaisa’s Chadcombe house in a case of mistaken identity after their accomplice, Shine Tanaka Nyamhunga, misdirected them.
“The police have arrested Shine Tanaka Nyamhunga (21) in connection with the armed robbery incident which occurred at Joseph Nemaisa’s Chadcombe residence on December 6, 2021,” national police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said in a statement
“Comprehensive police investigations have revealed that Nemaisa’s family was a case of wrong target as Nyamhunga had given his accomplices some information on some cash transactions by a company where he is employed.”
Nyamhunga had allegedly told his accomplices that the money was kept at his employer’s house in Chadcombe, a few properties away from Nemaisa’s.
“The attack on Nemaisa’s residence is, therefore, a case of mistaken identity or target as Nyamhunga was in constant touch with (a soldier) Tariro Gora (now deceased) with a view of having his employer targeted by the armed robbers,” Nyathi said.
“The suspects are now linked to five counts of armed robbery which occurred in Marondera, Belvedere, Hatfield, Cold Comfort, Mabelreign, in Harare where property worth more than US$52 300 was stolen.”
Police said they recovered different properties and an AK47 rifle that was discovered at Wirimai Nyandoro’s residence.
Two of the suspects, Francis Takura (33), an ex-police officer, and Nyandoro (37), a serving soldier based at One Commando Barracks, escaped the gunfire exchange with Nemaisa and were later arrested and taken to court facing 13 counts of robbery. They were remanded in custody to end of December.
Charles Chirara (30), a soldier, and Brian Tendere (39) and Gora (21) were killed during the shootout.
It has emerged that Chirara was a suspect in the US$27 million ZB Bank cash-in-transit heist in January and had been released on bail by the High Court.
In the Monday raid, Nemaisa arrived home after receiving a distress call from the family and found the robbers about to leave the premises after stealing US$850, a mobile phone, a laptop and a shotgun. He immediately fired at them, killing the three as Takura and Nyandoro fled through the windows.