Botswana police have arrested three people suspected to be part of an organized cross border crime operation following the discovery of a cache of stolen goods in Francistown.
According to police, some of the stolen goods were discovered in Bulawayo where they are being sold on the black market.
Security company employees are also under police scrutiny as they are believed to be a link to the racket.
Speaking to The Telegraph this week, Alakanani Makobo, officer commanding for district number 1 in Francistown, said: “We have so far arrested about three suspected illegal immigrants from Zimbabwe who are believed to be part of the organized syndicate who terrorize Francistown residents and surrounding areas.”
He said the three are this week expected to appear before the Francistown magistrate court. More arrests are expected to be made.
Makobo explained that lately, they have recovered stolen goods worth over half a million, consisting mainly of computers and plasma televisions.
He said some of the stolen goods are smuggled and sold to a certain electronic company in Bulawayo, and added that the goods recovered in Bulawayo were returned to Botswana.
“We have joint investigations with our counterparts in Zimbabwe who are assisting us. The Bulawayo company might also be charged for buying stolen goods, “ he said. “Our main worry is that such stolen goods were sold to people who knew they were stolen.”
He added: “We have identified a good number of people who will be criminally charged and appear before the court of law after the investigations are complete.”
He said some plasma TVs were also discovered with a group that had rented a one room house.
“How is it possible that a person of very low income can buy a very expensive TV when such a person stays in a one room house?” he asked.
He said what is puzzling is that most of the houses that were broken into had security alarms and electric fences, adding that he did not rule out the possible involvement of the security company’s employees.
He appealed to those who have bought stolen goods to return them to the police to avoid the risk of arrest. Makobo further urged the public to stop the tendency of buying stolen goods because it is a punishable criminal offense.