FOUR suspected armed robbers who committed a spate of robberies targeting foreign currency, gold and jewellery were on Wednesday killed, while one was injured in a shoot-out with police.
The survivor, Michael Vioma (34), is admitted at a local hospital.
Three other robbers managed to escape during the exchange of gunfire.
The deceased have been identified as George Munyaradzi Machanyangwa (37), Harmony Nyati (29), Polite Madamombe (34) and Titus Mashava (42).
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi yesterday said the gang was believed to have committed a spate of robberies countrywide between October last year and July this year.
They would target business and residential premises.
“Police detectives are investigating 24 recorded cases in which the suspects got away with large sums of cash — US$84 345, $30 814, R16 000, 100 000 meticals, 1 100, 4 860 yuan and 2 000 Dubai currency (Dirham),” Asst Comm Nyathi said.
He said the robbers also got away with gold, jewellery, vehicles, 18 cellphones, three iPhones, six pistols, a pellet gun and a shot gun, among other valuables.
Asst Comm Nyathi said the suspects, who were out on bail for other cases which are pending before the courts, had the audacity to continue engaging in acts of criminal activities while disregarding their bail conditions.
“During the commission of the robbery offences, the suspects would cover their faces with masks and threaten victims with firearms,” he said.
“In one such incident, they shot and injured a police officer who was reacting to a report where the suspects had been found committing robbery at Mabamba Complex, Chitungwiza Town Centre.”
Asst Comm Nyathi said on Wednesday, detectives acting on a tip off caught up with the armed robbers in Kwekwe, who opened fire at the officers.
The police officers reacted through gunshots, while trying to apprehend the five robbers.
“Two suspects, Phillip Mutasa and another one only known as Sean, escaped with possible injuries,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
“Four of the suspects succumbed to injuries sustained during the exchange of gunfire with the police, whilst the other one is admitted at a local hospital.”
Police recovered the robbers’ getaway car, three pistols and 12 rounds of ammunition.