Indian rape suspects offer $100k cash surety

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THE two Indian nationals who are accused of raping a local woman at a hotel in Harare, have now offered to pay $100 000 each in cash as surety for the temporary release of their passports to enable them to travel to their native country to attend to family problems.

BY CHARLES LAITON

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Krishna Satyanarayan Gandlar (33) and his alleged accomplice, Ravi Kumar Krishnan (40), last month approached the High Court seeking variation of bail on changed circumstances. They offered to increase the bail amount to $5 000, but the figure was opposed by the State and the application dismissed by the court.

Through their lawyers, Jonathan Samukange and Dumisani Mthombeni, the duo proposed to increase the bail money 20-fold and urged High Court judge Justice Lavender Makoni to release their passports promising they would return for trial and clear their names.

The lawyers also told the court the State was not ready to proceed to trial yet since the blood samples of the suspects that were taken for DNA tests were still in Zimbabwe and had not been referred to South Africa as alleged by the State.

In their submissions, the lawyers averred, the State was not telling the truth regarding the position of the State’s investigations, saying it would need Cabinet approval for the blood samples to be taken to South Africa for forensic examination, which process had not been done.

However, prosecutor Tapiwa Kasema insisted the State was opposed to the pair’s application saying the government was just waiting for the results and the samples were already in South Africa.

Kasema also said the State would not be moved by whatever figure the suspects could put on the table to persuade the court to allow them to leave Zimbabwe, adding their intention was to flee the jurisdiction of the country’s courts.

The matter was rolled over to today after Justice Makoni requested the State to provide proof of the documents supporting that the blood samples had been sent to South Africa.

The two suspects have been on remand and in the country for the past five weeks after being released on $1 000 bail each and they have also accused the complainant of attempting to extort money from them.