HIGHWAY cops smashed a suspected human smuggling syndicate in Victoria Falls on Thursday and arrested 16 illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
Police believe the 16 evaded immigration authorities in both Zambia and Zimbabwe on the porous border shared between the two countries either side of the Victoria Falls Bridge.
The 16 were held together with their Zimbabwean driver of a commuter minibus which was stopped by cops at a roadblock.
Jairos Chiona, the Victoria Falls police chief, said: ““We are holding 16 Bangladesh nationals on suspicion of illegal entry into the country.
“They managed to evade both Zimbabwe and Zambia immigration procedures and were only arrested at a police roadblock on their way to Bulawayo.
“They are going to be charged under our immigration laws and if convicted they will be deported.”
Their driver, who has not been named, was “assisting police with their investigations”, he added.
The group is expected to appear in court sometime on Friday.
Corrupt immigration officials at the country's border posts are blamed for an influx of illegal immigrants into Zimbabwe. Many simply bribe their way through.