The bail hearing for convicted rapist and former Bikita West legislator Munyaradzi Kereke is expected to go ahead today after the private prosecution filed its response to the application for bail pending appeal. Kereke, who is serving a 10-year jail term for raping his 11-year-old niece, is challenging both conviction and sentence.But in the response filed at the High Court yesterday, private prosecutor Mr Charles Warara said Kereke had no prospects of success on appeal.
“The applicant (Kereke) is a flight risk now that he has a long jail sentence hanging over him,” said Mr Warara. “The grounds of appeal and the present grounds advanced for his admission to bail are clearly at variance.”
Mr Warara said the conviction of Kereke was on the basis of overwhelming evidence which could not be challenged now.
Kereke argues that his chances of success on appeal were bright. He is offering to deposit $2 000 with the Harare Magistrates Courts, surrender title deeds of a single immovable property and passport to the Clerk of Court, among other stringent conditions in a bid to buy his freedom.
The regional magistrate, Mr Noel Mupeiwa, sentenced Kereke to 14 years behind bars, but set aside four years for five years on condition he does not commit a similar offence within that period.
The court, however, acquitted him on charges of indecently assaulting the victim’s elder sister.
Kereke insists that the charges he was convicted of were fabricated by the complainants’ maternal grandparents after he refused to pay their school fees arrears, but Mr Mupeiwa said at the time the case was reported to the police, the arrears had already been settled.
Advocate Thabani Mpofu instructed by Mutandiro and Chitsanga, will act for Kereke in the matter. Herald