Notorious armed robbers jailed 146 years

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By Mary Taruvinga

Three notorious serial armed robbers were Wednesday slapped with a combined 146 years jail term by a Harare Magistrate Clever Tsikwa following their conviction on several counts of robbery and attempted murder.

The three are Darlington Maruba (40), William Boka (39) and Kudakwashe Boka who terrorised Harare residents robbing them of their cash and valuables while leaving some for dead.

William Boka was convicted on one count of armed robbery and he was jailed 10 years.

The magistrate suspended two years of his sentence, leaving him to serve eight years effectively.

Maruba was convicted and sentenced to five armed robbery counts.

For the offences, he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment on each count.

Six years were suspended for five years on condition of good behaviour leaving him to serve 44 years effective.

Maruba was again convicted on one count of attempted murder and he was sentenced to eight years imprisonment.

In total, he will serve 53 years effectively.

Kudakwashe Boka was convicted on ten counts of armed robbery.

For this, he was sentenced to seven years imprisonment per count which means he was given 70 years.

Eight years were suspended for five years leaving him to serve 62 years effectively.

He was however convicted on three counts of attempted murder and he was sentenced to eight years imprisonment per count, in total, he will serve 86 years.

The three, according to the investigating officer, Brian Maigeta, specialized in highway robberies.

They operated from Mutare, Seke and Bulawayo roads targeting motorists including those who would have encountered breakdowns.

Appearing for State, prosecutor Loveit Muringwa proved that on September 21 2021 detectives received information linking Maruba as one of the highway robbery kingpins.

“After identifying Maruba ’s residence, the detectives organized a raid and teamed up with ZRP Canine Chitungwiza.

“Upon arrest, Maruba was interviewed in connection with the cases and he implicated his accomplices.

In one of the many counts the complainant Arthur Taruvinga was driving from Harare CBD along Mutare Road going to his place of residence.

The court heard that Taruvinga’s car ran out of fuel and parked it near PPC opposite the Sunway City Industrial area for refuelling.

He then contacted his uncle to bring him some fuel from home, whilst waiting for his uncle, a kombi passed by and stopped a few metres from where he was parked.

“The commuter omnibus driver assisted the complainant to start his vehicle since it had an airlock until it started running.

“At that moment, the accused persons emerged from the darkness and struck the complainant three times on the head and he fell.

“They later stole a star pistol, an iPhone 5 cellphone, a wallet with a military Identification Card, and bank cards,” Muringwa said.

The complainant went and reported the matter at Ruwa police station

On a different count, the complainant Phillip Mugayi was driving his Isuzu KB 300 from Chitungwiza heading to Greendale.

Whilst along Chitungwiza road he discovered that his left rear wheel developed a puncture and continued with his journey until he reached a bus stop just opposite the Headquarters 2 Infantry Brigade fence.

He parked the motor vehicle by the roadside after calling his son Tawanda Mugayi for assistance in replacing the deflated tyre.

Whilst Mugayi was seated in the motor vehicle waiting for his son to come, the trio approached him armed with a pistol and ordered him to unlock the doors after threatening to shoot him.

“The accused persons entered into the motor vehicle where they demanded cash from Mugayi and he gave them US$260.

“Suddenly Tawanda Mugayi arrived at the scene and parked it behind his father’s car, during that period the trio was ransacking the complainant inside his motor vehicle,” the court heard.

Mugayi saw the trio disembarking from his father’s motor vehicle,  one of the accused persons fired one shot on the bonnet of his motor vehicle whilst he was still seated inside.

In fear for his life, Mugayi drove off the scene to the 2 Infantry Brigade main gate.

However, the trio disappeared into the nearby bushy area.

The complainant and his son proceeded to Braeside police and made a report.