High Court judge Justice Benjamin Chikowero has severely criticised the police’s handling of the arrest of controversial businessman Wicknell Chivayo. Justice Chikowero also said the magistrate had misdirected himself in denying Chivayo bail. In his judgement after granting Chivayo $2 000 bail, Justice Chikowero said,
…It seems to me that the police not only unjustifiably ambushed the applicant, but clearly played to the gallery given the public profile of the applicant. It was for these reasons that I found that the learned magistrate misdirected himself in finding that there existed factors with the cumulative effect, which constituted compelling reasons to deny applicant bail.
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There was, therefore, no justification for a finding that the strength of the State’s case was likely to induce the applicant to flee to avoid possible conviction and long incarceration.
Chivayo is being represented by Advocate Lewis Uriri, who also served as President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s lead counsel at the Constitutional Court.