STAR FM DJ Munyaradzi Milimo’s alleged accomplices Mohammed Matare and Taurai Jani yesterday successfully pleaded with the court to grant them bail, arguing their co-accused person, DJ Munya, who was earlier granted bail, had closer links to the alleged kidnapping and subsequent murder of the late Tinashe Magorimbo than them.
REPORT BY CHARLES LAITON
The duo’s submission convinced High Court judge Justice Joseph Musakwa, who granted them $300 bail each after ruling there was a “weak link” between the two suspects and the commission of the offence.
“There is nothing to show that they (Matare and Jani) were in constant contact with the now deceased prior to his kidnapping and subsequent death,” Justice Musakwa said.
Before Justice Musakwa ruled in the pair’s favour, Matare’s lawyer Reason Muchirewesi told the court that the cellphone number that was allegedly used to demand ransom from Magorimbo was traced to one Mukuli Mwanka, whose Bulawayo address was non-existent.
Muchirewesi said DJ Munya was closely linked to the offence in light of the fact that at some point, he allegedly approached Magorimbo’s wife and assured her that her husband would come back home.
“The first accused (DJ Munya) person’s statement meant he knew where the now deceased (Magorimbo) was. He also knew the persons who had him and he is the one closely linked to the commission of the offence, but was granted bail,” Muchirewesi argued.
“Milimo was much involved in the commission of the offence than the first applicant (Matare). Therefore, denying the applicant bail would amount to discrimination on the part of the Attorney-General’s Office since they consented to Milimo’s bail,” he added.
Jani’s lawyer Gerald Madzima concurred with Muchirewesi’s submissions, arguing his client was also a suitable candidate for bail.
As part of the bail conditions, Justice Musakwa ordered Matare and Jani to surrender their passports, report once every Friday at Harare Central Police Station and not to interfere with known State witnesses.
Matare and Jani, alongside DJ Munya, were four weeks ago thrown behind bars after the State opposed bail.
According to the State, Magorimbo met his fate after he allegedly failed to pay DJ Munya $5 000 “compensation” for having an illicit affair with his wife.
In February this year, Magorimbo allegedly paid DJ Munya a part payment of $1 000 through his alleged accomplices Janhi and Matare, but later became evasive, allegedly prompting DJ Munya to enlist the services of Jani and Matare to force him to pay.