Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) treasurer Roy Bennett has dismissed as “false and mischievous” reports that he gave a false address during his high-profile criminal trial.
According to recent media reports, Bennett gave an industrial site as his address and as a result he could face perjury charges.
Bennett has written to High Court judge Justice Chinembiri Bhunu’s lawyers Chikumbirike and Associates saying police members who visited his premises proved that he resided at the given address.
The letter was written and delivered through the law firm representing Bennett, Mtetwa and Nyambirai Legal Practitioners.
Bennett has since authorised his lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa to act on his behalf in the case in which Bhunu is suing him for $1 million.
The lawyers said in the letter that the allegations of giving a false address were part of a calculated campaign to persecute Bennett.
“We have noted with great concern the spreading of demonstrable falsehoods in the media where it is being alleged as fact that our client gave a non-existent address in his criminal trial,” states Mtetwa in the letter to Justice Bhunu.
“We are surprised at these falsehoods as the police in fact visited those premises and were satisfied that our client was residing there at the time.
It is therefore not only false but mischievous to suggest that the address does not exist. We believe that this is part of the calculated and orchestrated campaign by the state media, a certain political party and those associated with it to persecute our client.”
Justice Bhunu sued the deputy Agriculture Minister-designate, Bennett, for $1 million for defamation following an interview which he allegedly granted to the British media.
The defamation suit emanated from Bennett’s alleged claims that he would not get a fair trial because Justice Bhunu had been given a farm by the state and was therefore compromised.
Justice Bhunu acquitted Bennett of the charges of plotting to assassinate President Robert Mugabe laid against him.