By Miriam Mangwaya

TWO men, armed with a rifle, allegedly broke into former First Lady Grace Mugabe’s Chivhu rural bedroom in Mazhawidza village on Thursday.

The suspects, Simbarashe Chokera (25) of Chivhu and Julias Monera (21) from Buhera, had committed a series of robberies in the Chivhu area before the latter was caught red-handed while carrying mattresses he had stolen from Grace’s bedroom.

The duo appeared before Chivhu regional magistrate Fadzai Mutombeni on Friday facing five counts of armed robbery and unlawful entry charges which occurred in Chief Musarurwa’s area.

They pleaded guilty and were remanded in custody to today for sentencing.

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Allegations are that on March 24, Chokera broke into Andrew Gona, a Featherstone farmer’s house and stole a loaded Bruno rifle, ZWL$2 100 cash and a cellphone.

Two weeks later, Chokera and Monera broke into Grace Marimira’s house, pointed the stolen firearm towards her and threatened to shoot her if she resisted.

The complainant managed to escape, leaving the suspects in her house.

They stole R1 400, ZWL$27 cash and some property.

On the other two separate occasions, they waylaid the complainants, Reason Chikumbirike and Beatrice Shindi, who were walking along a footpath and robbed them of their property valued at US$224.

On April 24 at Grace Ntombizodwa Mugabe (nee Marufu)’s Marufu family homestead, the two broke into the house, but a family member Revai Marufu, spotted them before they left.

They pleaded with her that they would return the two mattresses they had stolen so that she would not report them to the police.

When Monera entered the house to return the stolen property, Marufu locked him from outside and the matter was reported to the police.

Monera led the police detectives to Hokonya Mountains, where Chokera was hiding.

Police recovered some of the stolen property at the duo’s residence in Chivhu town.

Corrence Chimbadzwa appeared for the State.