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Journalist cleared of armed robbery charges

by Staff reporter
19 May 2023 at 20:39hrs | Views
THE State has withdrawn armed robbery charges against freelance journalist, Xolisani Ncube, after conceding it had failed to prove its case against him.

This prompted Harare regional magistrate Mr Clever Tsikwa to set Ncube free, at the close of the State case, due to lack of evidence linking him to the offence.

Prosecutor Mrs Loveit Muringwa on Wednesday conceded that the State had failed to prove its case against Ncube, who was being tried together with Joseph Phiri, Clever Mununudzi Nengomasha and Michael Mudumani Mandoro.

"Essentially you are letting the court decide on a matter that is clear," said Mr Tsikwa.

"The law is very clear; you have the power to withdraw the charges at any point after a plea when you realise that there is no evidence to support your case."

Ncube, who was represented by Admire Rubaya and Malvin Mapako, had denied the allegations saying he did not rob Andrew Neethling with the other three accomplices.

He was arrested in March last year and charged with armed robbery after police raided his home in pursuit of his cousin, Nengomasha, and recovered firearms.

Mrs Muringwa had told the court that the State had failed to rebut assertions by the journalist that he was live on Newzroom Afrika on the day and time the alleged robbery was committed, and it was impossible for him to be at two places at the same time.

The prosecution also said the State had failed to prove that Ncube knew of the presence of firearms recovered from his house and that no evidence was tabled to prove that he led to the recovery of the same.

The State lined up six witnesses to prove the case against the quartet but all of them exonerated Ncube, with the investigating officer, Terence Muunze, saying the journalist was "just caught at a wrong place at a wrong time".

Source - The Herald
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