POLICE in Bulawayo have linked armed robbers who raided a cash-in-transit vehicle transporting nearly 12kgs of gold worth US$ 675 000 from How Mine to Fidelity Printers to four other armed robbery cases in the city.
Thirteen suspects raided a Securico Security Company cash-in-transit van which was transporting the gold from How Mine to Fidelity Printers in the city earlier this month.
Police arrested three of the 13 and have connected some of them to four similar forays that occurred in the city.
The gang has been fingered in heists at two financial institutions, a fruits and vegetable wholesale and a grocery shop between May and October.
In total, the gangsters have stolen US$858 000 and R508 000 in five raids within four months.
Cops have since released photos of nine of the armed suspects in the How Mine attack who are on the run.
There is a US$5 000 bounty for anyone who may provide law enforcement agents with details that will lead to the arrest of the suspects.
The suspects include brothers who include Xiba Nkosilathi Tonderai Vumbunu, Abraham Vumbunu and Elijah Vumbunu.
Other suspects have been identified as Israel Zulu, David Sanyatwe, Jimmy Gonyate, Vincent Ishmael Chabikwa, Abbysinia Shuma also known as Dulini, Kelvin and Mike.
Police released photos of Elijah, Abraham, Chabikwa, Shuma, Gonyane, Mike, Kelvin and Zulu.
Bulawayo deputy police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Nomalanga Msebele said investigations associated some of the accused to armed robberies that happened within the city.
“The suspects are also wanted for robbery which occurred at Gain Cash and Carry wholesale situated at the corner of Jason Moyo and 6th Avenue which occurred on 18 May 2022. They are also linked to a raid of Hamara supermarket situated along Fife Street between 4th and 5th Avenue which occurred on 30 May 2022,” said Insp Msebele.
“They have also been linked to the robbery of Mukuru, a money agency situated at the corner of 13th Avenue and Herbert Chitepo Street which occurred on August 1. The suspects are also linked with the armed robbery of CBZ Fife Street which happened on September 13.”
Two of the armed robbers struck at Hamara fruit and vegetable supermarket and stole US$13 000 and R8000.
On August 1, four gun-wielding robbers snatched US$100 000 and R500 000 after intercepting a cash-in-transit Safeguard vehicle outside a Mukuru money transfer agent.
The security details were about to deliver money at a Mukuru branch located along 13th Avenue, between Lobengula and Herbert Chitepo Street when the robbery occurred.
The robbers disarmed the Safeguard security guards before looting the cash and escaping.
A month later, a team of five armed robbers pounced on CBZ Bank’s Fife Street branch in Bulawayo and got away with US$70 000.
The suspects are said to have entered the banking hall pretending to be clients before pouncing on the bank’s manager and getting away with cash.
Details on the robbery of Gain Cash and Carry wholesale were not available.
When the robbers attacked a security team at How Mine, they were travelling in three cars, a Toyota Hilux GD6, Nissan Hard body single-cab and a Nissan March.
They ambushed and blocked the convoy of security officers from Securico before disarming the guards and loading the gold into their vehicles.
There was an exchange of gunfire after the How Mine chief security officer observed the armed robbery resulting in the robbers abandoning one of their cars.
Hardly 24 hours after the robbery, police arrested three suspects Antony Moyo (39), Wilson Mutandwa (24) and Ernest Mutandwa (30).
However, the 10 others are still to be located amid suspicions that they may have skipped the border.
Police said US$5 000 is offered to members of the public who may provide information that may lead to the arrest of the accused.
“Should you have any information contact Detective Inspector Justin 0712915338, Detective Assistant Inspector Gadzai 0772226550, CID Homicide Bulawayo (0292) 271568, National Complaints Desk (0242) 703631, WhatsApp 0712800197 or any nearest police station,” read a police statement.