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Mountain prayer ends in grief as trio robbed of car, valuables by fake prophet

Cheeky robber orders one of his victims to teach him how to drive

By Staff Reporter

A mountain prayer ritual ended in grief for three worshippers who lost their car and some valuables to a robbery suspect who first approached them dressed in a garment and claiming he was a prophet.

The culprit, Hillary Rambakupetwa (29) from Bindura has since been arrested and convicted for three counts of robbery.

According to prosecutors at Bindura Magistrates Court, on 10 April 2024, three robbery victims drove to Dandarecha Mountain, Guruve in a Toyota Hilux for prayers.

The following day at around 10AM, Rambakupetwa approached the trio dressed in a church garment and pretending to be a prophet.

“He advised the complainants to buy various goods that he would use to cleanse them,” read a statement by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).

“The accused person later approached the complainants and lied that Chief Negomo had summoned everyone to another mountain to assist someone who had been bitten by a snake.

“On the way to the other mountain, the accused person threatened the complainants with a knife and stole belongings and cash valued at US$750.”

NPA said Rambakupetwa further ordered his other two victims to lie down and he force-marched the other complainant to the motor vehicle.

Added NPA, “He ordered her to teach him how to drive the car before he tied her hands and stuffed a cloth in her mouth.

“On the 13th of April 2024, the police managed to track down the vehicle leading to the accused person’s arrest.”

The value of the stolen property was US$93 650 and property valued at US$93 050 was recovered.

Rambakupetwa pleaded guilty to all the charges and was sentenced to 5 years imprisonment.

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