The State has asked the court in Lilongwe to withdraw application of forfeiture for part of property on former government accounts assistant Victor Sithole, convicted and jailed of being found in possession of stolen money and illegal possession of forex.
Sithole is serving jail after the Lilongwe Magistrate’s Court found him guilty on the three counts involving money found in his possession amounting to K112 million, $31 850 and 122 000 rands in September last year, which the prosecution had wanted forfeited to government.
State prosecutor on Cashgate cases, private practice lawyer Kamudoni Nyasulu, appealed to Lilongwe senior resident magistrate Patrick Chirwa that Sithole’s Whispers Bar and Area 25 house should not be forfeited because they are not part of the cashgate tainted property.
The application does not include the three months advance rental totalling K750 000 for a house in Area 47 and a Toyota Vitz.
Nyasulu said it was pre-mature to make an application to have the properties confiscated before the court made a ruling on Sithole’s appeal.
“The penalty to confiscate the property was halted until there is a ruling on the appeal,” he said in an interview.
Sithole is being represented by lawyer Ralph Kasambara – himself answering charges of money laundering.
Money laundering has a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of K2 million, being found in possession of money suspected to have been stolen attracts a fine while illegal possession of foreign exchange attracts a fine of K10 000 and maximum imprisonment of two years.
Meanwhile, the case has been adjourned to April 2 when the court is expected to deliver a ruling on the appeal.