PROPERTY developer Fellix Munyaradzi last week heaved a sigh of relief after he was acquitted of bribery charges by the High Court.
Munyaradzi was accused of bribing Thomas Mabgwe of the Zimbabwe Republic Police with residential stands to avoid prosecution over alleged offences involving land.
In his ruling, Justice Tawanda Chitapi said Munyaradzi did not commit any offence.
“It is ordered that the decision of the magistrate in September 2020 under CRB 108/20 be and is hereby reviewed and set aside,” Justice Chitapi ruled.
“The placement of the applicant on remand be and is hereby revoked on the basis that the facts as presented by the State do not constitute a criminal act.”
It was the State’s contention that Mabgwe, who is attached to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) headquarters, was allocated two residential stands in Sandton Park in Mt Hampden near Harare in September 2015 to cover up Munyaradzi’s alleged illegal land deals.
The court heard that Mabgwe was arrested on the same charges, but the High Court, in granting him bail also stated that the offence was not clear.
The State had alleged that Mabgwe was given a bribe by Munyaradzi in his capacity as Delatfin chief executive to protect the businessman from pending criminal charges.
Justice Chitapi ruled that it was the duty of the State to prove that Munyaradzi committed the offence and in this regard, the State failed.
“The applicant has no onus to prove anything,” Justice Chitapi ruled.