By A Correspondent- The police in Harare has arrested nine suspects, two of them foreigners, believed to be part of a vehicle smuggling and carjacking syndicate operating in the SADC region.
Of the nine, three were arrested in Mainway Meadows in southern Harare after they were found in possession of two cars — a Range Rover Evoque (registration number HZ 33CN GP) and a Toyota Fortuner (JH 81 HR GP), worth nearly R1 million together.
The vehicles are suspected to have been stolen in Namibia before being smuggled to South Africa and then Zimbabwe.
It is believed the suspects wanted to eventually smuggle the two cars into Zambia.
The suspects are a South African, Mpswati Obed Lucar (33), a Zimbabwean living in South Africa Brian Mabika (29) and a Zambian identified as SA Kalengo (36).
Investigations revealed that the trio was allegedly part of a syndicate that had been robbing people of vehicles in the region before smuggling them to other countries for resale using fake documents.
The trio was arrested on Tuesday following a tip-off and they are still in custody as investigations continue.
Detectives from the CID Vehicle Theft Squad received information that two vehicles were parked at a house in Mainway Meadows. When they arrived at the house, they found the two vehicles and the suspects who they questioned but they failed to give a satisfactory answer, leading to their arrest.
Detectives discovered that the cars were stolen in Namibia before they were smuggled into South Africa where fake documents and registration numbers were manufactured.
They were then smuggled into Zimbabwe en route to Zambia using the fake documents.
Both the engine and chassis numbers were tampered with and police have since engaged Interpol to assist with investigations.