Serial robber, rapist arrested after 4 years on the run

End of the road … fugitive Issa Siyabu was arrested after evading arrest for four years

HARARE – A serial robber and rapist, Issa Siyabu, who terrorised Harare residents for over four years while evading arrest, has finally been arrested.

Siyabu appeared before Harare magistrate Lois Makunyadze facing 29 counts of crimes involving robbery, rape and unlawful entry.

He pleaded guilty to 22 counts of robbery, rape and unlawful entry and is back in court this Thursday for plea recording.

The magistrate however found him guilty of 10 of the 29 counts before remanding him in custody.

According to court papers, Siyabu targeted Harare’s low density suburbs robbing residents of valuables and money worth over US$50,000, according to prosecutors.

One of his victims is former Harare mayor Bernard Manyenyeni.

Prosecutors allege he also stole from prominent businessman, Ronald Ajara.

The court heard he would break into various homes, threaten to kill the owners before stealing easy to carry valuables such as electronics, cash and clothing.

After the crimes, Siyabu would then go back to his Chegutu base.

According to court papers, in one count, Siyabu allegedly robbed and raped a woman after he broke into a house in Mt Pleasant, Harare.

“The accused demanded cash and she noted that she had no cash in her house which prompted the accused to place cloth in the complainant’s mouth before commanding her to lie down,” prosecutors alleged.

The court further heard that he then ransacked the whole house and found only US$5.

Siyabu is alleged to have forced the complainant out of the house at knife point instructing her to lead him to the main house.

He threatened to rape and kill the woman which prompted her to disclose where she was keeping her money.

“The two then went back inside the house where the accused took US$700.

“He further laid the complainant on the bed and raped her twice before leaving the house.”

In another count, Siyabu allegedly scaled Ajara’s security wall before he forced open the kitchen door.

Once inside the house, he stole a PlayStation, MacBook laptop, two speakers and a cell phone, all totalling US$5,000 in value.

It is further alleged that he also broke into Manyenyeni’s Borrowdale home on January 4 this year and stole a think pad, laptop, six Kenyan passports and other documents valued at US$2,000 through the window.

Siyabu was then arrested in Chegutu following police investigations.

Following his arrest, Siyabu took the police to each of the houses he broke into for indications.

The police also managed to match his fingerprints with those obtained from the crime scene.

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