Monday, March 20, 2023

State opposes bail for alleged fugitive from Granada

On Friday last week, the state prosecutor, Priscilla Israel, of the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP), warned Francistown Senior Magistrate Godwill Makofi not to grant bail to Crofton Hannibal, an alleged fugitive criminal from Grenada who is currently facing a charge of attempted murder in his country.

Hannibal, whose extradition hearing is scheduled for next month, had pleaded with the court through his lawyer, Keitshekile Sechele, to be given bail pending his hearing.

Giving her submissions, the prosecutor told court that should court grant the accused bail, there was a high chance that he would abscond and skip the country.

Hannibal, who is a draftsman by profession, was employed by the Ministry of Local Government at Sowa Town Council as an architect. He is accused of shooting a man in his native country of Grenada after a brawl over an architectural drawing in the town of St George in 2007. It is alleged that after the accused was slapped with a charge of attempted murder in his country, he later absconded and was later arrested in Botswana through the assistance of Interpol.

Israel continued to give a warning to court that it is clear that the fugitive would escape from Botswana just like he did in his country.

“The accused, who was given bail, absconded from Grenada which is over 10 000 km from Botswana, what would make it difficult for him to escape from this country to other countries,” she asked.

The prosecutor went on to rubbish the submission by the defense attorney who had initially stated that the accused could be granted bail provided that he surrendered his passport to the police. She said that even if the accused could surrender the travel documents, he would still abscond from justice as many other nationalities have done so before.

“We always have many nationalities that often cross into and out of the country illegally such as Chinese, Zimbabweans and Indians. What would make it difficult for him to cross the country without a document?” she asked.

 The court will give its ruling on Friday and the accused is currently remanded in custody.


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