Crime & Courts

JUST IN: Prosecutor arrested

Prosecutor Kasema

Crime Reporter

PROSECUTOR Tapiwa Kasema, who is under investigation for consenting to bail for four notorious armed robbers, including suspected gang leader — Musa Taj Abdul — has been arrested this morning and is now in police custody.

Kasema who went into hiding a few hours after he was suspended from duty by Prosecutor-General Kumbirai Hodzi surrendered himself to police at the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) Headquarters in the company of his lawyer.

He was then arrested and is still assisting police with investigations. The matter is being handled by the CID Police Ant-Corruption Unit (PACU).

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the latest developments.

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“We can confirm that Tapiwa Kasema has been arrested this morning. He surrendered himself at the CID while in the company of his lawyer. He is now in police custody and due processes of the law are now being followed,” he said.

Since Tuesday, officers from Harare Central Police Station, who were keen to question him as the investigation started, could not locate him at his Glen View 3 home where his family professed ignorance over his whereabouts.

The police first visited Kasema’s residence in 49th Crescent on Tuesday night, but did not find him.

They later proceeded to his mother’s house where the search yielded the same result.

Continued efforts to locate had been fruitless.

On Wednesday, Chief Law Officer in the Prosecutor-General’s Office Mr Justin Uladi confirmed the suspension of Kasema, saying the matter had been referred to the police for investigations, while they are preparing to launch an appeal against the High Court decision.

Mr Uladi said the State was appealing against Justice Chikowero’s decision to grant bail.

“Our prosecutor did not have the requisite authority to file the consent order as per our standard operating procedures,” he said.

“Further, the judge misdirected himself in relying on a concession which was improperly made. In an event the judge was not bound by the concession by the prosecutor. Therefore, the judge did not properly apply his mind to the case before him.”

Kasema made headlines when he was arrested last year on criminal abuse of office charges after he allegedly consented to the release of a passport belonging to former Cabinet minister Ignatius Chombo, who was facing several corruption allegations.

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He was arrested by officers from the Criminal Investigations Department Commercial Crime Division and his docket was being handled by the Anti-Corruption Special Unit department.

HERALD