POLICE in Beitbridge have arrested a gang of five robbers that has been preying on motorists on major highways.
The armed robbers have been using spikes to stop vehicles and were also targeting motorists who had breakdowns.
They were patrolling highways and pouncing on motorists travelling after 9 pm.
The robbers were operating within the 80 km radius from the border town.
The spikes were being used mostly on a stretch near the Bubi area where the road is being upgraded and there is a detour.
Along the Bulawayo road, the criminals were attacking victims between the Bishopstone turn-off and the Musane turn-off.
Most Zimbabweans are returning home from Eswatini, Lesotho and South Africa for Christmas and New Year holidays.
Figures from the Department of immigration indicate that an average of 4 000 people are using the border daily since December 10.
All the five suspects that have been arrested for the highway robberies are from Beitbridge.
Three of them Believe Shumba alias Chipanga (32), John Bhunu (34) and David Ratsauka (29) were recently released from Khami Maximum Prison after serving five years for robbery.
They were jailed for robbing a Malawian traditional healer of R98 000 cash and an assortment of clothes and groceries all worth R160 000.
The other two suspects are Ntanganedzeni Muleya (28) and Nigel Pandukai (27) .
National police spokesperson, Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the five will soon appear in court charged with robbery.
“We confirm the arrests of five suspects in Beitbridge on Tuesday after the police managed to trace one of the red Honda Fit, they were using to pounce on motorists,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
“Let me warn such criminals that we are alert and ready for them, in fact, their days are numbered since we have increased surveillance and patrols along all the highways countrywide”.
Asst Comm Nyathi urged motorists to observe the curfew hours and travel during the day. “You will note that most of the complainants are lone motorists robbed during the curfew time.
Where possible they must drive in convoys during the day,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
He said police will not take lightly those driving during the curfew period that runs from 9 pm to 6 am.