Four prosecutors are sitting in court over Hopewell Chin’ono’s latest charges of obstructing the course of justice in contravention of section 184 of the Criminal law (Codification and Reform) Act.
He was remanded in custody at Chikurubi Maximum prison for the offence.
Chin’ono was arrested at his home on Tuesday at around 5.15pm on charges alleging that he defeated or obstructed the course of justice while on bail over charges of inciting public violence ahead of the July 31 foiled anti-looting protests.
According to State papers Chin’ono claimed to have established relations with prosecutors from the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) who are also prosecuting him and got confidential prosecutorial deliberations.
On 25 October 2020, he is alleged to have posted a tweet that he had talked to prosecutors over Henrietta Rushwaya’s arrest on allegations of smuggling gold and that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) was going to accede to her being granted bail.
Coincidentally, the NPA consented to her being granted bail leading to his arrest which saw him being whisked away to Chikurubi Maximum prison where he is currently detained at the D- Class section where dangerous criminals are being housed despite the fact that he is on remand.
His defence led by Beatrice Mtetwa submitted that his incarceration there was a deliberate attempt by the State to punish him for exposing corruption.
The utterances arose after the State suggested that it could only respond to his 18-paged application next Monday after applying its mind to it.
The State was led by Lancelot Mutsokoti, Ephraim Ziyandu, Shambidzeni Fungura and Sessel Zvidza.
“Postponing the matter is a deliberate ploy to maximise his stay at Chikurubi Maximum prison, the State must respond by tomorrow as they were advised of this application on Thursday. Monday would be undue prejudice to Chin’ono,” submitted his lead counsel Beatrice Mtetwa.
She argued that journalists have sources that come in many forms, even anonymously and the State must prove its claims.
Mtetwa submitted that postponing the matter was a deliberate ploy to maximise his stay at Chikurubi Maximum prison, and that the State must respond by tomorrow as they were advised of this application on Thursday.
Mutsokoti stated that they needed time as the prosecution to apply their mind over the application and presiding magistrate Marehwanazvo Gofa consented.
The proceedings will commence on Monday at 2,15pm. Nhau/Indaba