POLICE in Harare are now targeting people who buy and sell stolen property in an operation aimed at curbing criminal activities in the city.
Raids are being conducted at popular markets where second-hand motor spares and other goods are being sold.
This follows an upsurge in cases of armed robbery and house breaking and theft.
A number of people have lost car batteries, mobile phones and other items to criminals in recent months.
Most of the goods are sold to unscrupulous traders, who then proceed to sell them at Magaba in Mbare, Gazaland in Highfield and Zindoga in Waterfalls, all in Harare and Chikwanha in Chitungwiza.
In the past few weeks, police managed to recover at least 15 plasma television sets, an assortment of cellphones, motor spares, generators, shoes, home theatre systems, gas tanks, gas stoves, refrigerators and several other items.
In an interview, national police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the development, saying those caught with stolen goods will be arrested.
He reminded the nation that it was criminal for one to deliberately receive stolen property.
“It is a criminal offence for anyone, especially those who sell second hand goods, to receive or buy goods or property knowing fully that they were stolen,” he said.
“Those who sell second-hand goods should know that there are legal procedures that are followed to verify the source of the goods before purchasing them.
“They should also keep documents for verification when need arises. Those who sell second-hand goods should be careful.
“The buyers are also not spared in the ongoing blitz targeting those who deal in stolen items.”