By Staff Reporter
Mutare: A police anti-smuggling unit was forced to fire live ammunition to arrest four men who had smuggled contraband of 174 bales of second-hand clothes and footwear from Mozambique into the country through an illegal entry point in resort area of Vumba.
Police had to fire live ammunition after the syndicate refused to stop at the checkpoint.
The smugglers, among them, Trust Kamhande (35), Pardon Mudimu (42) and Hilarious Chigondo (28) were arrested and brought before magistrate Purity Gumbo facing charges of contravening the Customs and Exercise Act.
The court was told the smuggled goods had a value of $33 575.
The magistrate sentenced them to 24 months each wholly suspended on the condition that they paid a fine of $ 9 000 each.
Prosecutors told the court that on January 17 at around 2300hrs, members of the anti-smuggling unit received information that there were trucks loaded with contraband which was intended for smuggling from Mozambique through Boarder streams area in Vumba.
The detectives teamed up and proceeded to the area and laid an ambush along Mutare-Vumba road.
The following day, around 0230hrs the two trucks approached from Vumba towards Mutate at high speed.
The detectives fired warning shots to stop them but the drivers did not heed to the call.
The cops had to fire live ammunition and deflated the rear wheels of the truck forcing the driver to stop. The smugglers were arrested on the spot.
Police recovered undeclared goods in the truck including rice, shoes and clothes.