65 Epworth residents set free over Shutdown Zimbabwe2016 protests after magistrate dismisses charges

Yesterday, Tuesday 07 March 2016, Harare Magistrate Victoria Mashamba dismissed charges against 65 Epworth residents who were charged with public violence. The 65 were alleged to have disturbed the peace and violently harassed motorists by blocking the Harare -Mutare highway with stones and burning tyres.

However, Obey Shava of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights who was representing the accused argued that the accused were not properly before the courts because some of them did not have warned and cautioned statements.

Magistrate Mashamba agreed with the defence saying what the State had done was unprocedural and ordered the prosecutors to put their houses in order, and dismissed the case.

There was drama after the Magistrate found one of the state’s witnesses to be in willful default.  Tendai Chimboza, a ZRP officer, ended up in custody and was ordered to pay a fine of $20 after he failed to appear in court to give evidence.  In the event that he fails to pay the $20 fine, he will spend 20 days in jail.

 

More: Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights

 

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