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Treason charges against Munyaradzi Gwisai & others - Index of articles
March 21, 2012
After being found guilty on a charge of conspiracy to commit public
violence as defined in section 188 as read with section 36 of the
Law (Codification and Reform) Act [Chapter 9:23], Welcome Zimuto
and five civic society activists, Munyaradzi Gwisai, Hopewell Gumbo,
Antoneta Choto, Tatenda Mombeyarara and Edson Chakuma appeared before
a Harare Regional Magistrate Mr. Kudakwashe Jarabini, today the
21stof March for sentencing in their case.
Sentencing was expected yesterday after the Magistrate listened
to both the defense and prosecution in mitigation and aggravation.
In mitigation, the defense counsel argued that the six had careers
and five of them had families. He also argued that the said conspiracy
had not succeeded. In aggravation however, the prosecutor urged
the Magistrate to give a deterrent sentence to warn other would-be
offenders. He also argued that although the conspiracy had not succeeded,
there was sufficient intent on the part of the defendants.
The six have
been sentenced to twenty-four months wholly suspended. Twelve months
were suspended for five years on condition that they don't
commit a similar offence. The other twelve months have been suspended
on condition that they pay a US $500 fine and perform four hundred
and twenty hours of community service in government institutions.
Fines should be paid by March 26 and they will commence their community
service on March 31. Welcome will be doing his community service
at Chinhoyi Provincial Hospital. However, defense lawyer Mr. Aleck
Muchadehama has given notice to appeal both conviction and sentence
at the High Court.
charges arose from a members' meeting they had on February
19 last year as part of the International
Socialist Orgarnisation [ISO]. Originally they were forty-six
people arrested and forty were released after three weeks of incomprehensible
prison conditions that also included torture.
with Treason and subversion of constitutional government which
was dropped preferring four alternative charges instead. They were
charged with the crime of Conspiracy to commit public violence as
defined in section 188 as read with section 36 of the Criminal Law
(codification and Reform) Act [Chapter 9:23] which they were found
guilty of . Inciting public violence as defined in section 187 as
read with section 36 of the Criminal Law (codification and Reform)
Act[Chapter 9:23]Or, Alternatively, Participating in gathering with
intent to promote public violence, breeches of peace or bigotry
as defined in section 37(1)(a) of the Criminal Law (codification
and Reform) Act[Chapter 9:23]Or, Alternatively Participating with
intent to promote public violence, breach of peace or bigotry as
defined in section (1) (c) of the Criminal Law (codification and
Reform) Act [Chapter 9:23] which they were acquitted.
was Mr. Edmore Nyazamba and the defense lawyer was Mr. Aleck Muchadehama.
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