Five armed robbers have been arrested by the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for stealing about 300 litres of diesel and two 12 volt batteries from Telecel and Econet booster towers situated at Banganyemba Mountain in Norton.

The suspects, Fungai Matsengarwodzi (29), Leon Bhasikiti (27), Moreblessing Chimunhu (18), Patrick Moyo (24) and Alfred Manenji (38) from Harare, who were driving a white Toyota Hiace Commuter Omnibus, under the registration number AEG 0430, proceeded to the telecommunication boosters armed with a knobkerrie, pliers, spanner, screwdriver and a crow bar on 25 June 2019 at around 01:00AM.

They approached the Telecel booster, which was manned by a security guard, tied him to a tree, robbed him of his cell phone and proceeded to break keys that were securing the generator diesel tank and drained about 150 litres of diesel.

During the process, the suspects also stole a 12-volt battery from the generator.

They took the loot into their getaway car and advanced to the Econet booster where they also drained another 150 litres of diesel which they filled in their 20 litre containers and stole another battery.

After finding a way out, the roped complainants quickly alerted detectives from CID Norton, who swiftly reacted to the information and were able to identify the suspects who were driving away towards Harare and intercepted them.

The suspects were intercepted, disarmed and subsequently arrested, allowing the detectives to recover a Samsung cell phone belonging to one of the complainants, fuel and the two batteries.

The suspects were taken to Norton Magistrate Courts where they were remanded in custody.

“The police would like to warn criminals against vandalism of essential services infrastructure,” Provincial Community Relations and Liaison Officer, Detective Inspector Portia Chinho said.