US$2,7 million bank heist ‘mastermind’ denied bail

Court

HIGH Court judge Justice Tawanda Chitapi has dismissed an application for bail by Fanuel Musakwa, who is alleged to have been the mastermind of the US$2,7 million bank heist in January.

Justice Chitapi noted that despite Masakwa comparing his situation to his co-accused who have been granted bail, the allegations against him did not show him as a good candidate for bail.

“To begin with, the 1st applicant (Fanuel Masakwa) was an employee of the complainant bank while others were not. The applicant was the alleged mastermind, planner and co-ordinator of the robbery.

“Quite apart from the non-binding nature of the decisions given in the other bail decisions referred to, the first applicant did not make any effort to persuade me that the circumstances of the 1st applicant and the co-accused’s are similar.

“Every case is after all dealt with on its own facts. The following order will be made; the application by Fanuel Musakwa for bail is dismissed,” Justice Chitapi ruled.

Chitapi further noted that Musakwa had not challenged the allegations against him, raising suspicion that he had indeed committed the offence.

“The 1st applicant did not challenge the allegations made against him before the remand magistrate. The failure to challenge the grounds for remand implies that the applicant admitted that the allegations against him grounded a reasonable suspicion that the 1st applicant had committed the offence.”

Meanwhile, Justice Chitapi granted bail to Fanuel’s brother Kelvin Musakwa.

He said Kevin had assisted the police in the recovery of some of the stolen money and that there was no actual evidence linking him to the crime.

“There was no indication that the 2nd applicant (Kelvin Musakwa) participated in the actual robbery. It was alleged by the 2nd respondent (the state) that the 2nd applicant was implicated by accomplices. They were not named.

“The 2nd applicant is, however, alleged to have voluntarily disclosed the existence of some money which he had hidden at his and 1st applicant’s rural home.

“The money, US$48 000, was recovered on the 2nd applicant’s indications.

“The investigating officer testified that the 2nd applicant led police to his rural home at Biriri village in Nyanga to recover the money.”

Kelvin Musakwa was ordered to deposit $50 000 with the clerk of court, to reside at his residence in Kuwadzana and to report at Kuwadzana Police Station every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.