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Magistrate reserves bail judgment on Masvingo drug peddler

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Magistrate reserves bail judgment on Masvingo drug peddler

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Simbarashe Mtembo
MIRROR REPORTER


MASVINGO–Magistrate Elizabeth Hanzi has reserved judgment for a bail application made by alleged drug dealer Mary Chisi (39) popularly as Mai Shantel this morning to tomorrow because she wants to put the judgment in writing.
Mai Shantel’s lawyer Omen Mafa of Mutendi, Mudisi and Shumba Legal Practitioners also requested time to file closing submissions.
Mafa told the court that the crystal meth was found in a bedroom Chisi shares with her husband and there is no evidence that the drugs belong to her. He also said she is the mother of two minor children and is not a flight risk as she cannot abandon her family.


He also said there are no compelling reasons why she should be denied bail and suggested that she pays ZWL$100 000 bail, report twice or thrice a week at Chikato Police Station, reside at her current address and not interfere with State witnesses.
Prosecutor Tarisai Muvengi opposed the bail and called the State’s star witness Assistant Inspector Paul Chale who led a drug taskforce that arrested Chisi to the stand.
Chale said Chisi should be denied bail for her own safety as there are aggrieved parents whose children are hooked up on crystal meth and are threatening to burn up her house.


He added that granting her bail will reduce the public’s trust in the Police, prosecution and courts as her arrest made headlines and the public is keenly following her case. Chale pleaded with the court that her case be tried and brought to finality early for the public’s interest.
“My worship the release of accused person may trigger a sense of shock to the public and jeopardize the public’s trust in the Police and Judiciary as it is of public interest. The Mirror published it in their edition of March 10 as one of their lead stories and the public is following it with a keen eye. Social media is also awash with her name.
“Releasing her will also endanger her life in the community as parents with children who are hooked up on the drug or in rehabilitation are threatening to burn her house,” said Chale.


Chale said disgruntled parents approached Officer Commanding Masvingo Commissioner David Mahoya and told him that Chisi is peddling crystal meth and their children are now hooked on the drug. The parents told Mahoya that they were going to burn Chisi’s house if she was not arrested.


Mahoya then formed a drug taskforce headed by Chale which arrested Chisi last Thursday. The taskforce was observing Chisi’s house when it saw Abiot Thleki entering and leaving the house after some minutes. Thleki was arrested and a gram of crystal meth in two sachets was recovered. Thleki was sentenced to a year in jail on Monday for possession of the drug.
The detectives then approached Chisi, introduced themselves and told her that they wanted to search her house.


“Chisi took out her bedroom key from a purse she was carrying and led us into the room. She set on a bed and we told her to give us the drugs that she has and she took a plastic from a bag on her dressing table which contained 29 sachets of crystal meth and handed it to us.
“We told her to give us all the crystal meth in her house and she gave us a plastic with 20 sachets that was under a pillow. She said that is all she had and indicated that she wanted to go and buy more meth. We searched her place and did not find more drugs,” said Chale.

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