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Cops complete bribery probe against preacher (Namibia)

By November 4, 2020Anti-poaching, Conservation

Original image as provided by New Era

Maria Amakali, New Era Live | October 30, 2020

Read the original story here.

The police have concluded their investigations into the case of self-proclaimed preacher Jackson Babi, who stands accused of attempting to bribe officers of the law about three months ago.

Babi appeared alongside his co-accused Ananias Ananias yesterday before magistrate Linus Samunzala in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court.

During court proceedings, prosecutor Precious Matali informed the court investigations into the case have been finalised and the State was ready to have the accused tender their preliminary plea.

Prosecution and defence agreed to have the matter postponed to 6 November for a plea in terms of section 119. Babi and his co-accused are facing bribery charges for allegedly offering investigating officers N$13,000.

The investigating officers are the ones tasked to investigate his first case, where he is facing charges of being in possession of two rhino horns, a firearm and ammunition without a licence.

In this case, he is charged alongside Frizans Naululu Dumeni. They were arrested in May and form part of the group that was found to be in possession of rhino horns. According to police reports at the time, the group of eight men includes a police officer from the VIP protection directorate.

The prosecution is charging the accused with counts of possessing or dealing in two rhino horns, hunting a rhinoceros that is protected by law and possessing a hunting rifle and ammunition without a licence. Prosecution claims Babi and Dumeni were in possession or dealt in two rhino horns at Babi’s residence in Kleine Kuppe in Windhoek on 26 and 27 May.

It is alleged the much-sought horns are linked to the poaching of two rhinos found dead and with their horns removed in the area of Gobabis in May.

According to court records, Babi has another case in Gobabis Magistrate’s Court, where he faces charges of illegal hunting of specially protected game in the Gobabis district.

Police investigations also led to the arrest of two more suspects: Alberto Mbwale and Joseph Matheus. Mbwale and Matheus appeared in the Gobabis Magistrate’s Court on charges of hunting specially protected game and money laundering in May.

All men are currently in police custody after being denied bail. Defence lawyer Kadhila Amoomo is representing Babi in the criminal matter whilst Dumeni is being represented by Kalundu Kamwi