Grant Russell (50) and Mark Strathen were supposed to stand trial today on criminal nuisance charges but were in no show when their names were called out. This led the State led by Mrs Shambadzeni Fungura to apply for a warrant of arrest which was immediately issued by Harare magistrate Mr Shane Kubonera.
Mrs Fungura told the court that it was now a tactic being used by the accused persons and their lawyer Mr Tendai Biti in a bid to evade trial. She added that this was not the first time for the accused persons to be issued a warrant of arrest on this issue.Russell and Strathen later appeared in court and applied for the cancellation of their warrant of arrest. Mr Kubonera deferred the matter to September 30 for trial commencement.
The court heard that on December 10, 2020 at around 2pm opposite the Celebration Centre, Borrowdale in Harare, the accused persons erected a billboard with damaging information on West Properties in a bid to tarnish its image. It is the State's case that Russell and Strathen caused false alarm to the public through the disinformation which was written in the billboard.
The court heard that the billboard erected by the two had contents which were likely to interfere with ordinary comfort or convenience of the complainant's clients. The complainant made a report to the police leading to their arrest.
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