Neville Mutsvangwa denied bail

Source: Neville Mutsvangwa denied bail –Newsday Zimbabwe

WOMEN’S Affairs minister Monica Mutsvangwa’s son, Neville, had his bail application dismissed by Harare magistrate Dennis Mangosi who advised him to return to court on May 30.

Neville, who was arrested last week together with Elias Majachani and Simbarashe Tichingana, pleaded not guilty to charges of dealing in foreign currency, trading in cash, money laundering and illegal possession of a Starlink router and antenna.

 

 

Mangosi, in his ruling, however, dismissed the State’s submissions that Neville and his co-accused would interfere with witnesses.

He said the trio’s argument that  the US dollar cash found at Mumba Money Transfer were free funds used to buy goods and properties outside Zimbabwe proved that they had connections outside the country and may abscond trial.

Mangosi also said Neville could sustain a livelihood outside the country.

“There is also overwhelming evidence that the accused were illegally dealing in foreign currency exchange and it is a serious case. Therefore, bail is denied [and] accused persons are remanded in custody to May 30 pending further investigations,” Mangosi said.

 

 

Lawyers Jacqueline Sande-Chimombe and Marble Tarugarira of Tarugarira Sande Attorneys had told the court that their clients were innocent and their dramatic arrest seemed premeditated.

The investigating officer Blessing Mandizha, who was being led by prosecutor Thomas Chanakira, told the court that the police recovered a list with names of clients, signatures and figures of money transacted from Neville’s workplace.

He said these formed compelling evidence that the accused were dealing  in cash and illegal foreign currency exchange.

 

 

Mandizha further submitted that Neville was found in possession of 26 international debit cards which they tied to the crimes of money laundering.

He also told the court that information obtained from Majachani on his arrest revealed that Neville is the one who updated them daily of the exchange rate they used to trade in foreign currency.

Mandizha also argued that Neville was likely to abscond court as the police found him hiding behind a pile of trash and was likely to relocate to another country as evidenced by his possession of vast visa cards from South Africa and Zambia.

However, Neville’s lawyers argued that the alleged illegal money transfer company did not belong to him.

They said as a son of a minister, it was likely that the relations he has to other countries are of good intentions and not criminal as the police alleges.

The lawyers disputed the investigating officer’s claims that Mutsvangwa was a flight risk because he hid from the police when they wanted to arrest him.

Chimombe also alleged that Neville was arrested by heavily armed police including members of the President’s Office and detectives.

Neville’s lawyer also said that his client’s possession of the Starlink equipment was not illegal arguing that company owners are the ones required to possess a licence for the equipment not the end user.

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