Two Namibians and a Zambian national were arrested on Thursday last week after they allegedly stole 49 cattle at Mutwalwiza in the Zambezi region.
The three suspected cattle rustlers took the livestock to the Nsundwa area, where they removed three heifers to barter them with an ox at a certain kraal.
The owner of the kraal allegedly also intended to offer one ox for the three heifers.
Zambezi regional crime investigations coordinator Deputy Commissioner Evans Simasiku yesterday said during the process, a cattle herder responsible for the stolen animals identified the heifers before the exchange could take place. The police were notified – and upon investigation, Simasiku said, the livestock were all recovered in the same village.
The suspects appeared in the Katima Mulilo’s Magistrate’s Court on Friday, where they were refused bail and the matter was postponed to 3 November for plea and trial.
The Namibian suspects are Patrick Mutonga and Owen Mutonga, while the Zambian has been identified as Joe Mwala.
Simasiku said the stolen animals were intended to be taken to Zambia in Livingstone for sale purposes.
“Investigation continues to round up all suspects involved and to break the chain of this group,” he noted.
Simasiku called on communal farmers to be careful and not let their animals roam around without being monitored.
Livestock farmers have also been cautioned to avoid buying animals without verifying the ownership.
He encouraged farmers to be aware because cattle herders are conniving with associates in Zambia in particular, adding the Zambian nationals are problematic thieves to the farmers in Zambezi.
“Cattle being stolen is removing the economic benefits of this region without paying taxes. I am urging farmers to protect their animals by informing the police and uniting with police officers to fight stock theft in the region by rounding up suspected persons loitering in areas and or villages,” Simasiku stressed.