Wednesday 14 June 2023


COMEDIENNE Felistas ‘Mai TT’ Murata spent the night in remand prison after she was convicted of theft yesterday.

She will be sentenced today.

Magistrate Munashe Chibanda ruled that the case was a classic example of theft of trust property and that the State had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt.

“It’s crystal clear that she entered into an agreement with the owners of the car.

“Liberty Gozhore, from the car rental company, told the court that Murata had failed to pay rentals for the car and she became evasive.

“He discovered that the car had been given to Rachel Mhuka as collateral and had to engage the police to help him recover the car from her.

“Mhuka told the court that Murata claimed that the car was hers and that’s why she took it as collateral.

Added the magistrate: “She only revealed that she was renting it after she started having problems with Gozhore, and that satisfied the essential elements of theft of trust property.

“This case was a classic case of theft of trust of trust property because there was intent to deprive the owners of the property of their car.

“She had the opportunity to return the car when she left for the UK, but instead, she left it as collateral.”

Mai TT was charged with theft of trust property after giving a rented vehicle as collateral to a loan shark.

The State argued that Mai TT entered into an agreement with the owners of the car, failed to pay for the service, and became evasive.

She left the car as collateral before leaving for the UK.

After conviction, prosecutor Monalisa Magwenzi applied to have Mai TT held in custody pending sentencing, and to allow them time to check if she has previous convictions.

“The State is making this application on the basis that it came out in the trial that she has more than one passport and we cannot ignore the fact that our borders are porous and she can flee this jurisdiction.

“It would be in the interests of justice that she be remanded in custody pending sentencing.

“She is a woman of means who can flee this jurisdiction and start a new life elsewhere.

“The postponement is just 24 hours and she will suffer little prejudice since the presumption of innocence has already fallen away,” she said.

Mai TT’s lawyer opposed the application and asked the court to grant her bail, pending sentencing, adding that she had been religiously coming to court.

Magistrate Chibanda granted the State’s application and said after conviction bail is no longer a right.

“It should be noted that after conviction, bail is no longer a right and the now convict hasn’t given a cogent reason as to why the court should grant bail,” she ruled. H Metro


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