Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Kgosi scores little court victory

Former Directorate of Intelligence Services (DIS) Isaac Kgosi scored a small victory when Magistrate Linah Oahile-Mokibe ruled in his favour and dropped one count of disclosing identities of agents during their covert operations.

Kgosi is charged with two counts; count one of the offence is the prohibition of disclosure of identity. The particulars of offence are that the accused person, Kgosi, between February 18 and 25, 2019 in Gaborone took photographs of officers as well as the identity cards of the officers engaged in DIS covert operations. 

On count two he is charged with obstructing officers and support staff.

“The accused person, Kgosi, on or about February 18, 2019 at Extension 6 obstructed x and y who are officers of the DIS in the execution of their duties by verbally assaulting them,” the charge sheet reads. 

When making her ruling Magistrate Mokibe said the defence team led by Unoda Mack and Thabiso Tafila were successful in their argument that the other charge which deals with a police officer who was involved in the covert operations be dropped.

She agreed with the defence lawyer that the said officer (police officer) “was not under oath and did not have DIS identity” therefore could not be allowed to give evidence in court.

Mokibe also ordered the state to amend the charge sheet and appear again on the 23rd March for status hearing.

State Prosecutor Thato Dibeela on the previous hearing urged the Magistrates Court to set the matter for trial, saying the state is ready to call more witnesses, key among them Peter Magosi and the intelligence team that was monitoring Kgosi’s movements at the time. While she admitted that the state was having difficulties with the original pictures and furnishing the defence with further particulars of the offense, Dibeela insisted that they were ready to go to trial with the evidence they have. 

When making his submissions, Kgosi’s lawyer Unoda Mack had asked the Magistrate to discharge Kgosi because there was no evidence linking him to any of the charges. He argued that the officers who were instructed to monitor Kgosi were on an unlawful mission as seen by their violation of Section 12 of the Intelligence Act. He added that one of the officers who was seconded from Botswana Police Services (BPS) was not accredited by the DIS to take part in the operation. He added that the said officer was not under oath and did not have DIS identity therefore could not be allowed to give evidence.

He further argued that the forensic evidence given by the BPS had absolved Kgosi from any wrong doing as the device that he was using was not linked to the non-existent pictures.

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