Court: Car theft CIO staffer refused bail

Source: Court: Car theft CIO staffer refused bail – NewZimbabwe  10/08/2016

A SENIOR Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) staffer arrested for allegedly stealing a vehicle in South Africa was Wednesday denied bail by a Harare magistrate, Tendai Mahwe.

Mbereki Mbizo Nyathi, 44 and alleged accomplice Abdul Ishamel, 30 were advised to apply to the High Court after the magistrate ruled he had no powers to consider bail for third schedule offences.

“Section 115 of the constitution only talks about who bears the burden of the proof and it remains High Court’s jurisdiction to deal with such matters.

“Section 113, which has not been amended, says the magistrate shall not admit an accused to bail when the prosecutor general is opposed,” ruled magistrate Mahwe.

The duo’s lawyers Admire Rubaya and Oliver Marwa had insisted that any court can now handle bail hearings for any offence following the amendment of Section 115 of the Constitution.

Nyathi and Ishmael initially appeared before provincial magistrate Vakai Chikwekwe.

They spent the heroes and defence forces holidays in custody pending bail hearing.

According to prosecutors, the duo stole the vehicle from South Africa last year.

The State claims that they connived with one Hilary Nduna, who is still at large, and other syndicates in South Africa to steal a BMW vehicle which they then smuggled to Zimbabwe.

Ishmael allegedly obtained a fraudulent registration book from the Central Vehicle Registry and also evaded payment of import duty to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra).

Court heard that, after registering the vehicle, Ishmael took it to Nyathi for safe keeping, taking advantage of the fact that the latter was a senior State security agent.

Nyathi was also said to have started using the vehicle which was valued at $15,000 and has since been recovered.