Harare Magistrate Arrested Over ‘Lenient’ Sentence For Cocaine Dealer

Magistrate Morgan Nemadire has been arrested and charged with criminal abuse of office after he convicted but fined a Venezuelan national $700 after the latter was found in possession of 5kg of cocaine worth US$500 000.

Nick Mangwana, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services confirmed Nemadire’s arrest. Mangwana said in a tweet:

In October 2020, Magistrate, Morgan Nemadire imposed a ZWL$700 fine on a Venezuelan national, Delcy Daymar Rodriguez Guererro, who was convicted of possessing more than 5kg of cocaine worth US$500,000. He has now been arrested and charged with abuse of public office (Corruption).

Mangwana’s tweet stirred interest among Twimbos with some condemning Nemadire’s arrest while others praised authorities for fighting corruption.

One of the people, who reacted to the tweet identified as Makoromokwa Zimba, said:

In Zimbabwe, a judge has dismissed Nguwaya who was facing USD 60 million fraud scotfree. Draxgate the judge is still at work;

Former Health Minister (Obadiah Moyo) has been charged with the looting of more than USD20 million and he’s still outside remand while those who hold placards demonstrating are jailed without trial. Sour grapes. Shame.

Responding to the same tweet, Tawanda Machaka, said:

I think it’s wrong to arrest a judicial officer for handing down judgments or sentences we are not happy with.

The law always provides recourse against such. Judicial officers must exercise their functions without fear of arrests in case some don’t agree with them.

For instance, we have a magistrate who almost had all his judgments denying bail 2 certain figures have overturned at the High Court.

If it’s a case of incompetence then the JSC (Judicial Service Commission) must step in & discipline its employees. Arresting them should only be on concrete evidence of corruption.

The lenient sentence imposed on the Venezuelan national by Nemadire contrasts sharply with that meted on a Mbare woman, Veronica Matongo, who was sentenced to 15 years in prison after she was arrested last year and found in possession of 2,3 kilograms of cocaine worth $184 464.

A Peruvian, who was also arrested and found with one kilogram of cocaine last December, was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

More: VOA News

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