Friday, 17 July 2020

JAILED TEEN CHARGED WITH 26 MORE OFFENCES


A VICTORIA Falls teenager who was recently sentenced to 11 years in jail for 18 counts of unlawful entry and theft, has appeared in court for 26 more cases of a similar nature.

Zinedine Zibusiso Siziba who turned 17 last month and residing at 6662 Mkhosana, broke into several premises between January and last month and stole property worth $152 358 as well as 400 euro and US$150.

He targeted mostly laptops, cellphone handsets, accessories and cash in different currencies when he broke into lodges and several houses in Mkhosana, Chinotimba, Aerodrome and low-density suburbs.

In most of the cases, Zinedine broke into the premises in the early hours of the morning when the occupants were sleeping. 

Zinedine, who caused a stir at the Victoria Falls Magistrates’ Courts on Monday when he attempted to escape, was yesterday convicted on his own plea of guilty to all the 26 counts when he appeared before magistrate Ms Lindiwe Maphosa.

Yesterday he was in leg irons and handcuffs.

He claimed no knowledge of some property stolen from two of the premises that he admitted breaking into, a limited plea which the State would not accept.

“You initially pleaded guilty to everything and now you say you didn’t steal some of the property on two counts. If you were genuine you should have said when you were asked during plea recording. The court will not let the State waste its resources calling witnesses for issues that are clear you did. 

“The problem is that you entered those premises which you admitted to as well, and that makes you accountable for the missing property,” said the magistrate.

The magistrate remanded him in custody to today for sentencing.

He is also expected to appear today for escaping from lawful custody. Zinedine told the court that he went on a theft spree because he wanted to sell the property to raise money.

Prosecuting, Mrs Sithabile Daka-Mungombe said Zinedine used the same modus operandi of forcibly opening closed doors and windows with an unknown object to gain entry into premises where he would steal various kinds of properties.

A majority of the complainants managed to identify their property after the arrest of Zinedine who led police to various people he had sold the goods to.

The total value of the stolen property is $152 358 and property worth $128 425 was recovered from the people he had sold to. The 400 euro and US$150 was not recovered.

A probation officer recently recommended that Zinedine be treated as an adult for purposes of sentencing as he had failed to reform. Chronicle

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