Gaborone Village Magistrate Alice Rammapudi has dismissed the bail application made by Gaborone lawyer Gabriel Kanjabanga on behalf of four men suspected of intention to commit cyber crimes.
The four men, who have been remanded in custody until their next mention on July 31, 2013 are Joseph Ballout, Kgosana Tladi, and Thavo Tsoledi all South Africans as well as Thabo Molefe of Mogoditshane.
Denying the accused’s bail, Rammapudi said that although they might suffer by remaining in custody, the state might suffer more than them if they are given bail as they might already have tampered with data on cyber space.
Before then their bail application was opposed by the Directorate of Public Prosecution lawyers, Priscilla Israel and Kentse Molome.
For her part, Israel said that she was against the accused being given bail as they temper with data from cyber space contained in computers confiscated from them by the police.
The second prosecutor, Molome, supporting Israel’s submissions, said that the suspects be remanded in custody since police investigations were still fresh and had to be carried out both in Botswana and in foreign countries and that the case was delicate as it involves cyber space crime.
When applying for his clients to be given bail, Kanjabanga had submitted that there was no evidence before the Court to raise fears that the accused persons would temper with evidence on the seized computers.
He further said that the prosecution was only alarmed by the words ‘cyber crime fraud’ and added that the alleged offences were just criminal acts just like any other ones. He said that principles of law that allow people to be given bail should apply in the case.
State’s case is that the accused persons were found in possession of laptop computers and other devices that were designed to commit cyber crime.