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Biti's recusal application thrown out

by Staff reporter
12 Jun 2021 at 07:48hrs | Views
There will be no changes in the prosecution team facing lawyer and MDC Alliance vice president Tendai Biti in his trial on charges of manhandling a Russian woman during an altercation outside Harare Magistrates Court.

This followed the dismissal of Biti's application to have senior prosecutor Mr Micheal Reza recused from his trial.

Harare regional magistrate Mrs Vongai Guwuriro Muchuchuti said as a prosecutor had no say in deciding the innocence or guilt of a person on trial, it was difficult to see how retaining Mr Reza could affect the fairness of the trial.

 The defence provided nothing before the court which proved that Mr Reza was likely to prosecute unfairly in this trial, she said, and found that the defence did not provide reasonable grounds on why Mr Reza should be recused from the matter.

The trial will now open on June 18.

Biti, through lawyer Mr Alec Muchadehama, had applied for the recusal of Mr Reza saying he was scared of him as he was very powerful.

It is the State's case that Ms Tatiana Aleshina was allegedly insulted and assaulted by Biti outside the Harare Magistrates Court building, but still within the precincts of the courts.

Mrs Aleshina filed a report with the police and has also lodged the two further complaints with the Law Society of Zimbabwe.

In her complaint, Ms Aleshina wants Biti investigated for alleged gross unprofessional conduct and alleges she and her workmates were intimidated and verbally abused outside the court each time they came.

Ms Aleshina is one of the witnesses in the Katsimberis criminal case involving alleged fraud with regards to a joint venture with Pokugara Properties to build cluster houses in Harare's Borrowdale suburb.

In that case, Katsimberis is being accused of using plans that were not approved by Harare City Council which led to the show house being demolished.

Source - the herald
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