Police have gunned down five people, including two former-convicts, who jumped off a vehicle and attempted to escape at Chisamba while they were being transported to Lusaka to face the law.
The two slain individuals are part of the convicts that dictator Michael Sata has been releasing in order to win sympathy from fellow criminals.
The slain suspects in the Chisamba incident are Mercy Kasonde, Kennedy Masempela, Simon Zimba, Joseph Kanko and Tony Mutondo.
Lusaka Province police commissioner Joyce Kasosa said the Chisamba incident happened on Tuesday after police recovered four stolen vehicles, including one belonging to the National Savings and Credit Bank (NSCB) which was snatched at gunpoint in Chilanga a fortnight ago.
She said the suspects were part of a gang of criminals who stole the NSCB vehicle Toyota Hilux registration number ABK 8092 and killed Mr Francis Banda and Mr Martin Ngoma in Chilanga.
Other vehicles that were recovered are a Toyota Hilux registration number Com 2080 belonging to the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, Toyota Corolla and another vehicle, both unregistered.
Ms Kasosa said two vehicles were in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and two others on the Copperbelt.
She said the accomplices of the criminals trailed the police vehicles all the way from the Copperbelt and when they reached Chisamba, they unleashed an attack on police officers and attempted to kill them.
Their accomplices were trailing our officers and at some point as they were overtaking a convoy of vehicles, they shot at the officers and one of the policemen was injured.the police fired back at the criminals.
The criminals on the vehicle took advantage of the confusion, jumped off the vehicle and scampered, she said.
Two of the suspects were apprehended on the Copperbelt while three others were cornered in the neighbouring DRC where they were hiding.
The two ex-convicts, who were serving jail terms for aggravated robbery, were released on presidential pardon last October.