SUPERMARKET LOSES $1M COOKING OIL THROUGH TILL SLIPS CON
THREE daring Chitungwiza fraudsters allegedly edited till slips to steal cooking oil worth $1 million from a Rusape supermarket.
The three — Prince Dzikamunhenga, Last Nyatsanga and Lot Gwesu — managed to steal from TM Pick ‘N’ Pay’s Rusape branch on eight different occasions and were arrested on the ninth attempt.
This was after the supermarket had a stock-take which revealed the anomaly, resulting in management increasing their surveillance mechanism.
Dzikamunhenga, Nyatsanga and Gwesu were finally arrested last week and appeared before Rusape magistrate, Mr Obedience Matare, facing fraud charges.
They were remanded in custody to November 3 after Mr Matare said they were not proper candidates for bail despite a spirited representation by their attorney, Mr Taurai Khuphe of Khuphe and Chijara Law Chambers.
Prosecuting, Mrs Melissa Saide said the trio, working with two other suspects who are still at large, visited the supermarket on eight different occasions.
One of them would buy a single unit of cooking oil and get a receipt. Instead of leaving the supermarket, they would return the bottle to the shelf.
“They would leave the supermarket and proceed to edit the receipt. They would return with the edited receipt and hand it over to unsuspecting employees who would proceed to the warehouse to collect the cartoons of cooking oil without noticing that the receipt would have been tampered with,” said Mrs Saide.
She added: “On October 7, the accused persons, in connivance with two other suspects who are still at large, went to TM Pick ‘N’ Pay in Rusape were Gwesu used his mobile number 0786685794 to purchase 2-litre bottle of cooking oil. He returned the cooking oil to the shelf and went outside the shop with nothing.
“Together with his accomplices, they went on to edit the receipt to misrepresent that he had bought 42x2litres of cooking oil. They went back to the supermarket and collected the cooking oil, valued at $104 999 . They loaded the oil in the trolley and went straight to the check point using the forged receipt,”said Mrs Saide.
It is alleged that the accused persons went back to the supermarket on the same day and used the same method to steal cooking oil worth $98 999 on two different occasions.
Mrs Saide said the gang returned to the supermarket the following day and used the same trick to steal cooking oil valued at $109 999 and $175 999 respectively.
On October 10, Mrs Saide said the suspects pounced again and stole cooking oil valued at $134 399, $148 399 and $114 799 respectively.
Their luck run out after the supermarket conducted a stock-take and discovered the huge shortfall, thereby prompting management to go through the Close Circuit Television (CCTV) footage.
It was discovered that the accused persons were stealing from the shop.
“On October 11, TM Pick ‘N’ Pay manager, Mr Simon Chadya conducted a stock-take and discovered the shortfall. He viewed the CCTV footage and saw the accused persons committing the offence.
On October 12, the trio went back to the shop intending to commit the same offence.
They were identified through the CCTV and were arrested.