SA: Zim bandit ‘Tinashe Max Makisi Virima’ gets 180 years behind bars

A 32-year old Zimbabwean who has been terrorising villagers in communities around Polokwane in South Africa’s Limpopo province has been slapped with two life sentences and 180 years in jail for rape, kidnapping, robbery and assault.

Tinashe Max Makisi Virima of Masvingo terrorised communities, especially women. Some of his victims included couples having sex inside cars at secluded areas.

 He was convicted of 38 counts of robbery, rape and kidnapping by a Thohoyandou High Court division judge on Friday last week.

Virima had pleaded not guilty to all the charges, telling the court that he was in Zimbabwe when the offences were committed.

Virima committed the crimes between March 2012 and April 2015. He kidnapped, assaulted, and raped his victims. He committed the offences in the company of his friends who are still at large.

“They would ambush the complainants in their cars, rob them and would go on to rape the female victims. Some of the rape victims would be raped after their houses were broken into,” said National Prosecuting Authority provincial spokesperson for Limpopo, Mr Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi.

The court heard that Virima targeted people who were walking at night. In some instances, he would break into homes where he would rob and rape women between the ages of 14 and 35.

The prosecutor, Advocate Zwodangani Mabodi, led oral and DNA evidence which linked him to the crimes. The court imposed the prescribed life sentences in the rape and 15 years each in the robbery committed under aggravating circumstances. The sentences will run concurrently.