A 21-year-old Nyazura woman was handed a nine-year jail sentence after she was convicted of stock theft by Rusape magistrates’ court.
The suspect, Junior Matinyarara pleaded not guilty but was convicted after a full trial which was presided over by magistrate Rufaro Mangwiro.
In her defence, Matinyarara tried to shift blame to her accomplice who is still at large.
She told the court she was not involved in stock theft but was trying to assist her accomplice Patrick Muzhiki, who is a fugitive from justice, to sell the cattle which he had recovered from his failed previous marriage.
But the overwhelming evidence which was presented before the court proved beyond reasonable doubt that Matinyarara was guilty of the offence.
Prosecutors told the court that at unknown date in April 2021, Matinyarara and her accomplice Muzhiki, who is her ex-boyfriend connived to steal from Remigious Mavera, two cattle.
On April 19 at around 1900hrs, the suspect and her accomplice proceeded to Mavera’s kraal in Chitepo village, Mwenje farm, Nyazura and stole two oxen which they drove to her village.
Court was told that Matinyarara and his accomplice drove the cattle to her uncle Isaac Mashava homestead village 2, Tiverton Nyazura during the same night.
When they arrived, Muzhiki left Matinyarara and Mashava in custody of the two oxen.
Matinyarara woke up her uncle and told him that the two cattle were part of her lobola from her previous marriage in Sharara and she wanted to sell them.
Matinyarara reportedly went and tied the two beasts to trees using ropes in Mashava’s field and began to contact cattle buyers and Obert Mombeyarara who is a cattle agent buyer intending to buy the two beasts.
The suspect charged one cow US$350 while other one was US$300.
Mavera and other villagers made follow ups for the stolen beasts by tracing hoof prints, ant footprints for Matinyarara and her accomplice leading to the recovery of the two beasts at Mashava’s field.
The ropes and accused’s pair of sandals were produced as exhibit in the court.
The value of the stolen is ZW$72 900 and it was all recovered.