Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Murder-accused police officers ask investigators to return their cellphones

Lawyers representing two police officers, Atlholang Mojanki and Tshepho Queen Newe, who are facing a single count of murder on Monday pleaded with Francistown Senior Magistrate, Thebeitsile Mulalu to order investigation officers to return the three cellphones belonging to the accused persons.

The two police officers are charged with the murder on January 3 of one Bokani Socks who was a nurse at Nyangabgwe Referral Hospital. The murder incident happened in Donga location in Francistown.

The investigation officers had confiscated the cellphones belonging to the two officers as part of their investigations.

Representing the first accused, Kabelo Gaonyadiwe of KK Sechele Attorneys pleaded with the magistrate to order the investigation officers to bring back the cell phones.

“The police took my client’s cell phone on a quest that they are conducting investigations and this is long overdue. My client needs the cellphone because it is his means of communication,” he said.
Standing in for the second accused another defence lawyer, Shathiso Nlebgwa also demanded that his client be returned her two cellphones.

“I do not think there is any justification for the police to hold on those cellphones for such a long period. My client also requires those cellphones for communication purposes,” he said
The prosecutor, Atina Mandingo of the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP), told court that investigations are still not complete. He further said that they are still waiting for a forensic report.

However the magistrate said that he does not have the power to order the police to bring the cellphones especially that investigations are still not complete.

“Section 57 of the penal code gives the investigation officers the right to withhold properties during investigations,” said the magistrate.

The two accused persons are out on bail. Their next mention date will be on the June 16.

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