Thursday 27 August 2020


Jailed Robert Martin Gumbura's legal team says the reduction of his jail sentence from 40 to 20 years is not enough and has approached the High Court seeking leave to appeal the court's decision at the Supreme Court.

Gumbura was jailed effective 40 years following his conviction on four counts of rape and one count of illegally possessing pornographic material in 2014, but argued on appeal in the High Court that the sentence was harsh.

The court, sitting as an Appeals Court, reduced the sentence by half early this month, agreeing that it was a bit extreme. In his application for leave to appeal, filed at the High Court on Tuesday, Gumbura's lawyer Mr Tapson Dzvetero, said there were reasonable prospects of success on appeal.

He argued that it was a misdirection on the part of the High Court, not to treat the sentences as one for purposes of sentence.

"Although sentencing is a matter of discretion, I believe that the Supreme Court may determine a total of 20 years on a 57-year-old man is manifestly excessive," he said. "It may also be persuaded that all separate sentences ought to run concurrently."

During the appeal hearing at the High Court, the defence team had asked the court to reduce the jail term to 10 years on each count of rape and the counts to run concurrently, so that Gumbura would serve 10 years, which he has already served in terms of the law.

Gumbura went on trial at the magistrates' court facing nine counts of raping six women and one of possessing pornographic material.

He was convicted of four counts of rape and one of illegally possessing pornographic material and was sentenced to 50 years in prison for rape before 10 years were conditionally set aside. He was also jailed four months for breaching the Censorship and Entertainment Act.

The sentence would run concurrently with the 40-year jail term. It was the court's finding that Gumbura regularly used sex enhancement drugs and that he owned pornographic material which contained scenes of group sex. Gumbura prevailed over his victims by using death threats. Herald


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