Jailed car thief gets 10 more years

HARARE - A car thief currently serving an effective 18 years in prison for stealing cars, has been slapped with another 10-year prison term.

This was after he voluntarily implicated himself on two more car theft charges.

Harare regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya initially sentenced Blessings Makomborero Chiduke to a collective 16 years in jail on the three counts he was facing.

On the first count, Mujaya had sentenced Chiduke to five years in prison, six years on the second count and a further five years on the other charge.

The first and second counts’ were ordered to run concurrently, before one year was suspended on condition of good behaviour.

Mujaya credited Chiduke for pleading guilty fast and not wasting the court’s time.

Chiduke voluntarily told the court of some of the charges he was facing, before pleading for the matters to be brought and dealt with at once.

He told the court how he stole seven cars between June last year and May this year.

After being sentenced in May this year, Chiduke was brought back to court on Tuesday, for robbing Nathan Shanda’s car.

According to prosecutor Valerie Ngoma, the incident took place in June last year, when Shanda, who is a taxi driver, was parked at Karigamombe Parkade in Harare’s central business district.

The court heard that Chiduke and his colleagues, still at large, approached Shanda during the night, claiming they wanted to hire his car to Koala Park.

Shanda thought Chiduke and his accomplices were genuine travellers. The court heard when they arrived at Koala Park, Chiduke and his accomplices asked Shanda to turn left into a gravel road.

After travelling for a kilometre, the gang asked Shanda to stop. Chiduke grabbed Shanda by the neck, before tying both his hands using a cloth.

The gang also tied Shanda’s legs using his belt.

They searched him and seized $54 and his cell phone, before giving him $1 to travel back into the city centre.

The gang drove off, the court heard.

According to State papers, Chiduke later employed Vanroy Goremucheche to drive and use the stolen car as a taxi in Mahusekwa.

Goremucheche was later fired after he failed to meet Chiduke’s $150 per week target.

The car was later impounded by police after Chiduke gave it to Chamunorwa Shonhiwa, who was using the car without registration plates.

Chiduke was later seen driving another stolen car, before he was arrested in Harare’s Epworth suburb with a car stolen in Marondera.

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