Police in Bulawayo last week arrested two men who were part of a gang that stole number plates from cars around the city and fitted them onto their Honda Fit vehicle to commit crimes.
Bulawayo Police spokesperson Inspector Abednico Ncube said the suspects, Fayton Zata (27) and Thabo Mthombeni (29) abandoned their motor vehicle a Red Honda Fit, registration number ACO 9550 at the scene on 24 April when they were spotted by alert security guard tempering with some motor vehicles that were parked at Ascot shopping centre. He said:
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The abandoned motor vehicle was searched, and the following items were recovered: a national identity card and driver’s license belonging to accused number one, a pair of scissors and a set of number plates AES 4028 were in the boot.
The number plates had been reported stolen on 20 April 2021 from a Mercedes Benz ML 270 vehicle which was parked at Cold Storage Commission in Belmont, Bulawayo.
Police crack team searched on social media using Facebook and managed to identify accused person number one using the recovered particulars.
The team managed to communicate with the accused person through Facebook and he disclosed his residential address.
Insp Ncube said Zata was arrested at his place and he admitted to having committed theft from motor vehicles and that he abandoned the vehicle, a Honda fit at Ascot Shopping Centre in Bulawayo. He added:
Zata also revealed that he committed the offences in the company of Mthembeni adding that they committed the offence with the other three accused persons only known as Bhekani, Geribee and Farai who are still at large.
The two arrested accused persons indicated that they got the number plates ACO 9550 from one of the outstanding accused persons known as Bhekani.
Insp Ncube warned criminals that the long arm of the law is closing in on them.