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Musa Taj Abdul bail: High Court reserves ruling

By Mathew Masinge

The High Court has reserved a ruling wherein the Prosecutor General-Kumbirai Hodzi has moved to revoke bail granted to notorious armed robber Musa Taj Abdul and gang.

Suspended state prosecutor Tapiwa Kasema and notorious armed robber Musa Taj Abdul and his gang
Suspended state prosecutor Tapiwa Kasema and notorious armed robber Musa Taj Abdul and his gang

Abdul and Godfrey Mupamhanga were released on $5 000 bail whilst Rudolph Kanhanga was released on $2 000 bail last December.

The trio’s release caused a public outcry after it appeared that the prosecutor who handled the matter, Tapiwa Kasema, allegedly erred in his consent.

“Mr Kasema ought to have been guided by the investigating officers’ affidavits and considered the factors enumerated above as clearly appears on the form 242s, but he instead consented to the bail application without proffering any sound basis or reasons for doing so.

“His response that he consented as a result of corruption,” said PG Hodzi.

PG Hodzi also told the court that prosecutor Kasema misdirected himself causing the Judge to grant bail in favour of the gang who were allegedly on the run for the past 20 years.

He said the trio is of no fixed aboard.

According to the PG, Kasema failed to consider important information that the accused persons had residence outside the country where they could easily escape to.

“Applicant respectfully submits that it has come to his attention that the prosecutor who dealt with the bail application did not, as he is required to do, seek the necessary consent from his superiors in order to make the concession that he did, in cases of a serious nature, such as the charges respondents are facing.

“A perusal of form 242 and the affidavits deposed to by the investigating officers show that Respondents ordinarily reside abroad, Abdul resides in South Africa, Kanhanga resides in Zambia and Mupamhanga also resides in South Africa,” reads the application.“This therefore shows their strong connections outside the country, this being a cogent of their likelihood to abscond and sustain livelihoods outside the country.

“The form 242s also show that Respondents allegedly committed the current charges whilst on bail on cases of a similar nature,” said PG Hodzi.

Further allegations are that, other relevant documents including the investigating officer’s affidavit opposing bail were missing when bail was granted.

“In the circumstances, PG respectfully submits that Abdul, Kanhanga and Mupamhanga’s bail ought to be revoked and that they be committed to prison as the prosecutor’s concession was irregularly made.

“The honourable court was misled into accepting the concession,” reads the application

In opposing the application, the trio’s lawyer argued that the application must not succeed because all relevant information was included in the Form 242 during bail application.

The lawyers argued that the State was fully aware of the application and has failed to prove that the trio is indeed a flight risk and is resident outside the country.

They also dispute that they have been evading arrests for the past 20 years. H Metro