Latest News Editor's Choice

News / Local

2 bogus cops arrested

by Staff reporter
02 Aug 2021 at 19:24hrs | Views
Two people who were masquerading as police officers have been arrested in separate incidents in Harare after they were found extorting money from pirate taxi drivers and a suspected ‘fraudster'.

The arrest comes after police recently warned bogus police officers who were extorting money from people that they risked being arrested and prosecuted.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the arrest of Richmond Mikeke (21) in Mbare and Simbarashe Mataka (25) in the city centre.

"Richmond Mikeke aged 21 was arrested by officers in Mbare while he was collecting money from several pirate taxi drivers while claiming to be a policeman," he said.

"The officers had been monitoring the situation, leading to his arrest. Investigations are still in progress."

Asst Comm Nyathi said Mataka, who is a convicted fraudster, was arrested at Eastgate Shopping Mall while attempting to extort US$100 from a victim he accused of being linked to a fraud case.

Police officers who were on patrol managed to arrest Mataka and investigations revealed that he was in 2017 once convicted in Mutoko for a case of fraud.

Asst Comm Nyathi warned those masquerading as police officers that the law will take its course and urged the public to demand identification cards from people they suspect to be bogus police officers.

Last week, Asst Comm Nyathi said it was an offence for police officers to use their private cars on official duty, amid a rise in bogus police officers using unmarked vehicles.

This came after several police officers and some rogue members of the public have been using their cars on the pretext that they are either enforcing a traffic blitz or national lockdown regulations, while demanding bribes from offenders countrywide.

Most of them have been targeting mostly various traffic offenders and errant drivers of pirate taxis and kombis.

The Herald understands that some of them have even gone to the extent of moving around with spikes, chasing after the traffic offenders and those ferrying passengers at undesignated pick up points, especially in Harare.

These rogue police officers normally move around in vehicles such as Honda Fit, Toyota Wish and Toyota Vitz, among others.

When they ‘effect an arrest', they normally threaten the victim with detention before demanding a bribe to facilitate release.

Some criminals are also taking advantage of the situation to rob people, especially after offering them lifts.

Asst Comm Nyathi said they were aware of such cases and the force had effected several arrests, especially in Harare and Bulawayo with some of the cases before the courts.

He said they had also noted with concern that criminals were taking advantage of commuters who use undesignated pick up points to rob them after offering them lifts.

Harare provincial police spokesperson Inspector Tendai Mwanza recently said there had been a surge in criminals masquerading as police officers.

He said anyone claiming to be a police officer carrying out investigations should produce identification cards or should prove which police station they were coming from.

He said every citizen had the right to check with the police station in question if such police officers did exist and if there were any investigations involving that citizen.

Source - the herald
More on: #Bogus, #Cops, #Stealing