FOUR Zvishavane illegal gold panners have been jailed to an effective two months after they were arrested during an operation code-named Chamupupuri.
George and Pepukai Hwange, Advance Gumbu and Chikume Tavonga pleaded guilty before Gweru magistrate Sithembiso Ncube on charges of mining without prospective licences before being slapped with the two year prison term each.
It was the State’s case that on April 24 police officers from the minerals squad were tasked under an operation to raid Hwange village under Chief Matanda in Zvishavane for illegal gold miners.
When the cops arrived at the mining scene villagers fled leaving George and Pepukai who were in a pit digging for gold with shovels.
The two were arrested after they failed to produce prospecting licences.
Police proceeded to Bread Farm in Gweru where they raided Gumbu and Tavonga who were digging for gold in a pit.
Police confiscated a plastic dish and 50kg sack before arresting the two accused persons.