Notorious female burglar jailed

MUTARE - A notorious female burglar has been slapped with a 17-year jail term after she was convicted of 29 break-ins.

Emily Gwembe, was convicted on her own plea of guilt by magistrate Tinashe Bepura.

The 34-year-old will be effectively caged for 12 years after the other five years were suspended on condition of good behaviour.

She was charged with unlawful entry as defined in Section 131(1) as read with Section 131(2)(e) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23 in all 29 counts which were grouped in four records — one with seven counts, the second with 10, the third with two and the fourth with another 10 counts.

Gwembe mostly used duplicate keys to gain entry, getting away with thousands of dollars worth of property and cash, blaming it on evil spirits.

“Your Worship, I don’t know why I had to steal other people’s property. I think it can be evil spirits because I started to steal when I was young,” she pleaded.

“In 2013, I was convicted of the same offence and I wish to repent but I failed,” Gwembe told the court.

In his ruling, Bepura told Gwembe that she proved people wrong that burglary was a vocation for men.

“You proved that this serious crime which affects the prevailing peace among community dwellers can be committed by women. You are one in a million. However, a strong message needs to sent to the community that burglary is a serious crime which attracts a jail sentence,” Bepura said.

In the first record, seven counts were treated as one in sentencing, attracting a four-year rap, with one-year suspended for five years.

In the second record, there were 10 counts, for which she was given six years, of which two were again suspended.

The third record had two counts, for which she was slapped with a 16-month jail term, of which four months were set aside.

The fourth record had another 10 counts, which landed her another four years, where one year was suspended on condition of good behaviour for the next five years.

Fletcher Karombe was prosecuting.

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