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Zimbabwe's 'youngest' rustler caught housebreaking

by Whinsley Masara
24 Mar 2016 at 05:34hrs | Views
A BOY, 7, from Tsholotsho who, jointly with his two elder brothers, was allegedly involved in house-breaking and stocktheft has been arrested after being caught red-handed breaking into a house on Monday night.

The minor, who dropped out of school in Grade One last year and cannot be named for ethical reasons, was arrested but his brothers aged 14 and 22, fled the scene. They are still at large.

He told police that he and his brothers were responsible for the theft of dozens of goats and chickens in Tshino village, under Chief Mathuphula.

He said his eldest brother was the mastermind of the gang.

Village head, Charles Vundla, told The Chronicle the boy revealed to police that his mother would cook the meat they stole.

"The parents have knowingly been eating stolen meat," he said.

He said the boy said the family of five would eat a goat and finish it in two days.

"The boy revealed they had so much meat that they never bothered to eat the hooves and heads, which they buried."

"He said we told her we were stealing. The boy said their mother would fry the meat and say it didn't matter. He said their father said she should get her sons arrested but she refused," said Vundla.

The village head said the father ended up enjoying the meat reluctantly and in silence.

He said livestock had been disappearing in alarming numbers since last year.

"Last month, five goats and seven chickens belonging to one person disappeared. The mystery has been solved following the arrest of this young boy," said Vundla.

The boy led villagers to where some of the heads and hooves were buried and some villagers were able to identify their livestock, said Vundla.

On Sunday night, the three brothers tried to break into a house belonging to a man only identified as saTshengi.

A villager said saTshengi heard them at around 8PM and woke up to investigate.

"The two elder brothers fled but the seven-year-old was caught," said the source.

The source said villagers chased after the duo in vain.

"They were too fast. During the chase saTshengi met three boys who joined in the chase but still failed to catch them," said our informant.

Ndiba Mlangeni, a villager, said they suspect the boys stole all the goats that went missing in the past months.

"In the past two months a number of villagers have lost their goats. We suspected the family but it's bad to point fingers without proof.

"It's very sad to see this young boy who has absconded from school, engaging in such a bad trend," said Mlangeni.

"We also wish the parents could get thorough punishment for deliberately eating stolen food," said Mlangeni.

Matabeleland North acting police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Eglon Nkala could not be reached for comment.

Source - chronicle