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Herald assistant news editor Takunda Maodza arrives for his initial remand hearing while escorted by detectives. He was remanded on US$50 bail
The Herald assistant news editor Takunda Maodza who is accused of blackmailing the director of Sam Levy Village, Mr Isaac Levy into giving him money not to publish a news article incriminating him as a supporter of the People First political party led by Joyce Mujuru, has been remanded out of custody to November 25 on US$50 bail.
Mr Levy allegedly offered Maodza US$700. Maodza (35) appeared before Harare magistrate Mr Tendai Mahwe charged with attempted extortion as defined in the Criminal Law Codification and Reform Act.
Maodza’s lawyer Mr Clemence Takaendesa of Charamba and Partners law firm advised the court that on November 25 he will make an application for refusal of further remand on the basis of lack of sufficient evidence to sustain the charge.
Maodza has not yet been asked to present his defence outline.
Prosecutor, Ms Sharon Mashavira alleged that on November 3 around 3pm, Maodza went to Sam Levy Village where he approached the head of security, Mr Charles Kapfupi (56) and asked to see Mr Levy.
It is alleged that Mr Kapfupi left Maodza with Mr Levy in his office and that Maodza then introduced himself as a journalist from The Herald who wanted to know if it was true that Mr Levy supported People First, a political project reportedly led by Joyce Mujuru and Didymus Mutasa and asked if Mr Levy had been approached by People First to be the treasurer of the project. Mr Levy denied the allegations.
The court heard that Maodza went on to produce a letter dated October 21 2015, addressed to “Hon Didymus Mutasa” with subject being “Treasurer’s Posts-People First Project.”
It is alleged that Maodza then told Mr Levy that if he did not give him money he was going to publish the story in The Herald.by Fungai Jachi.
Source: the herald