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Mechanic appeals against sentence


A mechanic who was last year found guilty and sentenced for stealing a grinding mill, spares and a crankshaft from a business man in Matabiswana area of Insuza, Lupane, has appealed to the Bulawayo High Court challenging the sentence.


Mzamo Dale Ndebele (75) was found guilty of theft by the Bulawayo magistrate Tawanda Muchemwa last year.

He was sentenced to five-years in jail, which was wholly suspended on condition he compensated then businessman Christopher Moyo $9 500.

However, following the sentence, Ndebele through his lawyer Advocate Sabelo Sibanda, applied to the High Court seeking an order compelling the magistrate court to reverse the sentence.

He later reportedly abandoned the appeal for some time until the courts ordered him to be issued with a warrant of arrest and was arrested on July 4.

Following his rearrest Ndebele’s appeal has been reinstated and is expected to be heard at the High Court sometime this week by judge Justice Meshack Cheda.

“The court a quo relied on the uncorroborated evidence of the complainant with regards to the alleged sale and therefore, alleged theft of his property,” he submitted.

“The magistrate erred on a point of fact and law by his failure to take into consideration and giving due weight to the findings of the inspection in loco of the property in dispute.”

Ndebele also said the magistrate erred by finding him guilty of the offence, without essential elements of the crime of theft being fulfilled.

Allegations are that on a date unknown in 2002, Ndebele went to Moyo where he took a grinding mill, mill spares and a crankshaft to his home for repairs. After that, he allegedly went to London without returning the property to the owner.

It is said Moyo went to Ndebele’s home, where he saw his property which had been sold to someone who stays in Kezi. Moyo later that year met Ndebele in Nyamandlovu and asked him about the property and Ndebele is said to have promised to return it, but to no avail, before he returned to Britain.

Moyo reported the matter to the police leading to Ndebele’s arrest when he returned.

He led the police to his brother’s home in Douglasdale in Bulawayo where he showed them a stripped engine, which he claimed was Moyo’s. Moyo told the police that the stripped engine was not his, while Ndebele also showed them mill spares, which the businessman said were also not his.

The crankshaft was not recovered. Ndebele claims he did not steal the engine, rather it was the complainant who failed to bring the spares to repair it.

“He never asked me to return them and also failed to honour the promise of bringing the spares so that the engine was repaired and the property is still at my home,” he added.

Ndebele asked that the sentence be dismissed.
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