US$92 000 Newlands Heist Latest: One male and six female Securico guards thrown behind bars

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SEVEN security guards from Securico Security Services have been taken in for questioning by the police following a brazen cash-in-transit (CIT) heist in which four men pounced on a Securico CIT vehicle before casually seizing two trunk-loads of cash amounting to US$91 980 and $514 840 at Newlands Shopping Centre in Harare.

Sources said the seven, comprising six women and a man who was the driver of the CIT vehicle, are assisting police with investigations following the movie style robbery which was executed with swift precision at about 11am on Thursday at an automated teller machine at Standard Chartered bank.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said investigations into the matter were in progress.

“We do not want to give out too much information at the moment.

We will provide the information at the appropriate time, but I can confirm that we are still conducting investigations,” he said.

Asst Comm Nyathi said police were exploring all possibilities including the suspicion that the robbery could have been an inside job or that there was a leakage of information that led to the robbery.

An eyewitness who operates from Newlands Shopping Centre told The Herald yesterday that the driver of the vehicle remained in the vehicle while his colleagues, one of whom was armed, went into the bank.

“When the security guards arrived at the scene, they took one of the trunks and went straight into the bank. On their way out, that is when they were attacked by the robbers.

But what I wonder is not even a single shot was fired at the scene when the robbery occurred,” he said.

Yesterday, Closed Circuit Television footage emerged showing in graphic detail the incident.

From the sequence of events playing out on the video, it is clear that the suspects faced minimal resistance as they casually offloaded trunks of cash from the Securico vehicle.

The actions of the guards, supposedly trained to be equal to such scenarios, has set tongues wagging after they were captured on video running away as the suspects pounced.

In the CCTV footage that has been circulating on social media, only one suspect is seen disembarking from a white Honda Fit before the security guards who were manning the CIT vehicle fled in all directions, with no attempt whatsoever to confront the suspect.

The suspect, who was not armed, was later joined by some of his accomplices as they helped themselves to the cash.

In the video, it appears that no single shot was fired by the suspects to scare away the security guards.

Most of the people who reacted on social media said the alleged robbery was either well-planned or an inside job.

Police have since set up a Criminal Investigations Department (CID) crack team to launch a manhunt for the suspects who are still at large.

Asst Comm Nyathi appealed to anyone with information that might assist them with investigations to contact any nearest police station.

In another case, police are investigating circumstances in which two company employees who were driving a Honda Fit Hybrid vehicle were attacked and robbed of US$34 000 at around 8.30 pm on Wednesday, again in Newlands.

Asst Comm Nyathi said the two were attacked by robbers while delivering cash.

— Chronicle


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