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'Biti attempts to permanently stop trial'

by Staff reporter
30 Mar 2022 at 06:15hrs | Views
The State has accused CCC vice president Tendai Biti of trying to permanently stop trial in his assault case through making consecutive applications.

Biti is facing allegations of manhandling a Russian investor during an altercation outside the Harare Magistrates Court.

His lawyer, Mr Alec Muchadehama told the court that trial should not commence since they made an appeal against Justice Chitapi's ruling at the Supreme Court which has a pending determination.

Mr Muchadehama said trial should not kick off until the Supreme Court makes its determination which Mr Reza opposed.

Mr Reza argued that the defence wanted a permanent stay of proceedings and the permanent recusal of himself and the magistrate.

Magistrate Mrs Vongai Muchuchuti Guwuriro deferred the matter to Thursday for ruling.

Proceedings in this matter were stayed last year by the High Court after Biti approached it seeking the recusal of both the trial magistrate Mrs Muchuchuti Guwuriro and the trial prosecutor Mr Michael Reza on the basis that they were both biased against him.

However, Justice Chitapi dismissed Biti's application for review saying he should stand trial.

He ruled that there was no evidence of bias by Mr Reza or Mrs Muchuchuti Guwuriro.

Justice Chitapi dismissed the argument that Ms Muchuchuti-Guwuriro was biased, and dismissed his allegation that she had herself contacted someone at the Master's Office trying to track down Mr Muchadehama as there was no evidence of this and no affidavit from the named officer.

The judge said Mr Reza, as the prosecutor and the other counsel in the trial, had every right to try and track down his colleague.

Ms Tatiana Aleshina is one of the witnesses in the case involving building contractor George Katsimberis who is alleged to have defrauded a land developer with whom he had entered into a joint venture to build cluster houses in Harare's Borrowdale suburb.

In the matter, Katsimberis is accused of using plans that were not approved by the council which led to the show house being demolished.

Ms Aleshina is the chief operating officer of the land developer.

Source - The Herald
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