Tendai Ruchiyo, 34, stands accused of breaking into retail shops in the capital and making off with cash and other valuables worth US$65 802.

Bogus police officer jailed 9 years

A BOGUS police officer, who went on a carjacking spree last year while using a fake police identity card, was slapped with a nine year jail sentence yesterday.

Calton Nzanga, who stole three cars over a period of three months, was convicted by Harare magistrate Judith Taruvinga after being found guilty on all three counts of theft as well as impersonation of a police officer.

Taruvinga sentenced Nzanga to nine and a half years, but suspended two years on condition that he does not commit any other offence.

Effectively, Nzanga will now serve seven and a half years in jail.

Nzanga was also ordered to pay restitution to all his victims for the belongings he stole from them before March 30 this year.

Belinda Chimuka prosecuted for the State. 

On the first count of theft, Nzanga stole a Honda Fit from Ronald Nyangani, 21, in May last year. Nyangani was dropping off passengers in town when Nzanga stopped him and produced a police identity card with the name Chikwewe before arresting him for pirating.

After being told of his arrest, Nyangani immediately contacted the owner of the car who suggested they come to his workplace to clear the matter. Nzanga then requested to pass by some shops to buy some food for his boss and asked Nyangani to buy on his behalf. On his return, he was startled to find his car gone as Nzanga had stolen it taking with him his two cell phones, a black wallet with US$30 and his driver’s licence.

On the second count, Nzanga used the same fake police identity card to impound a white Toyota Wish from Moses Tapiwa Masowa and his brother.

The brothers were picking up passengers at an undesignated point in Harare on June 30 last year.Nzanga took charge of the motor vehicle and drove towards Harare Central Police Station before taking a detour and requesting money from the complaints, who gave him US$20.

The convict told the pair that he wanted to go to Morris depot to discuss with his colleagues whether they could accept the US$20 or not.

When they arrived, Nzanga distracted the brothers by assigning them some tasks. When the brothers had alighted from the vehicle, Nzanga sped off and stole the car.

 He took with him two cellphones, a nanocoating machine and $2 400.

Nzanga committed the third offence on July 2, 2021 using the same fake identity card to arrest Manyoni Mbeve, 46, who was dropping off passengers from his Toyota Wish. Nzanga “arrested” him for stopping at an undesignated zone and threatened to impound the car. Mbeve requested to settle the matter privately and Nzanga demanded US$150.

However, Mbeve indicated he could only pay US$100 after collecting it at his house in Ruwa. The two then headed out for Ruwa while Nzanga was driving and collected US$110 instead.

On their way back to town from Ruwa, Nzanga asked Mbeve  to stop by a shop and buy some food for him  on his behalf.

When Mbeve left the car to buy the food, Nzanga stole the car, taking with him a solar battery, his passport, international, Zimbabwean and defensive driver’s licences.

On July 12 2021 while Mbeve was in a friend’s car traveling from Kwekwe, he positively identified Nzanga driving his car at a roadblock and quickly alerted the police. Nzanga sped off and drove against oncoming traffic before he jumped out of the moving vehicle. He was then apprehended by residents at a nearby farm, leading to his arrest.


Dionne Kanyowa