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Land baron bail ruling today

By Nyore Madzianike

Land baron Felix Munyaradzi, who is facing allegations of attempting to defeat the course of justice and interfering with a State witness, Assistant Commissioner Erasmus Makodza, will today know whether he will be freed when Harare provincial magistrate Mrs Vongai Guwuriro makes a ruling on his bail application.

Munyaradzi yesterday applied for bail after the State successfully placed him on remand, which he had initially challenged.

He is being charged with defeating the course of justice.

In his bail application, made on his behalf by lawyer Mr Nickiel Mushangwe, Munyaradzi argued that he was a proper candidate for bail as the charges are an off-shoot from his main charge.

He argued that his matter should have been treated as an enquiry into the breach of bail conditions, not a fresh charge.

“The charge is an off-shoot of other charges and the matter should have been brought as an enquiry.

“The investigating officer did not proffer any reason why he decided to bring the matter on remand when the simplest thing to do was to come for an enquiry,” he said.

Mr Mushangwe told the court that Makodza caused Munyaradzi’s arrest and accused him of cooking the allegations against him.

“Makodza, who is the complainant, caused the accused’’s arrest.

“Accused (Munyaradzi) was released on bail on August 18, 2020 and one of the conditions was that he should not interfere with witnesses. He complied up until the time of his arrest.

“What is curious is that he was arrested on March 19 through a complaint by Makodza and that came after Makodza’s arrest,”he said.

He also claimed that there was bad blood between Munyaradzi and Makodza resulting in the arising of the charges.

“There is animosity between Makodza and accused. The letter written by Makodza (on allegations that Munyaradzi was having a relationship with Constable Fortunate Dube) buttresses the animosity between them.

“Shadreck Homera is another witness and there is animosity between him and Munyaradzi.

“Homera also owes him (Munyaradzi) money and that caused animosity,” he said.

The State led by Miss Audrey Chogumaira opposed to Munyaradzi’s application saying he was likely to abscond trial.

Miss Chogumaira said Munyaradzi expressed fears that Munyaradzi might interfere with witnesses since he has shown propensity to do so when he allegedly called Munyaradzi.

“This is a case wherein accused has breached bail conditions and chances of interference are high. There are two outstanding statements that need to be recorded including from those send by accused and the witness who was approached,” she said.

Miss Chogumaira submitted that Munyaradzi’s cases were continuing to mount, which might induce him to flee. The Herald