A BULAWAYO woman was nicked after stealing 47 pairs of panties and stashing them between her thighs, a court heard yesterday.

Sibusisiwe Ncube, of Mzilikazi suburb, was spared jail by Mrs Gladmore Mushove after admitting shoplifting at the Bulawayo Magistrates’ Court.

Ncube walked into Costham Trading Wholesalers along Lobengula Street on 11 November pretending to be one of the afternoon shoppers.
The court was told that soon after entering the shop, Ncube, a mother of three, first took a fleeting look around the building apparently to make sure that Mr Thembumenzi Sibanda, the shopkeeper, was not on the lookout.

Satisfied that no one was watching her, Ncube quickly picked a bunch of 47 knickers worth $74 and thrust them in between her thighs. Mr Sibanda, who had placed her under surveillance, intercepted her just as she tried to walk out of the shop.

Mr Sibanda searched Ncube and discovered the stolen underwear hidden in her panties. The magistrate sentenced her to three months in jail, which were wholly suspended on condition that she completes 105 hours of community service.

She will commence the work on 18 November at the Bulawayo Magistrates’ Court building. In sentencing Ncube, Mrs Mushove took into consideration that she was a first offender and that she had children to look after.

“You should be thankful that I did not send you to jail because I took into consideration the plight of your three children who rely on you for their livelihood. I also noted that you are a first offender and therefore community service would be the most appropriate punishment for you,” the magistrate told her.

Soon after the verdict, Ncube was all smiles as she was being whisked away from the dock by prison officers.