ConCourt rebuffs Batatawala, Thodi – Capital Radio Malawi
29 May, 2024

ConCourt rebuffs Batatawala, Thodi

One of the accused, Batatawala, during a previous court appearance in Blantyre

The High Court in Zomba sitting as a Constitutional Court has dismissed with cost an application by business man Abdul Karima Batatawala and former Immigration chief Elvis Thodi.

Batatawala and Thodi filed an application asking the court to declare their criminal proceedings on money laundering charges, unconstitutional.

The duo is facing criminal charges allegedly for inflating figures of materials supplied to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services by a company owned by Batatawala.

According to their lawyer Fostino Maere; “Charging them under Financial Crimes Act (FCA) was unconstitutional as the previous Money Laundering Act attracted a maximum of 12 years imprisonment while the current FCA attracts a maximum of life imprisonment upon conviction.

“The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) charged them under FCA enacted in February 2017 when their offences were allegedly committed in 2009 and 2012.”

Delivering the ruling yesterday, the three-judge panel chaired by Justice Texious Masoamphambe noted that charging the two with the offences under the FCA does not violate their rights.

The judgement means that their criminal proceedings at the Blantyre Magistrates Court, which was halted in January 2023 to pave way for this judicial review, will continue.

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