Tanzanian businessman faces human trafficking charge

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Extension II Magistrate’s Court has ordered the wife of a Tanzanian, John Leonard Massawe, who is facing charges of human trafficking, to be restrained from communicating with witnesses in Tanzania.

The prosecutor in the case, Priscilla Israel told the court yesterday that the accused’s wife had in the past communicated with potential witnesses in Tanzania. She said by so doing she may temper with their investigations, which are still at initial stages.

“Because the offence originated from another country, Tanzania, the police here have to liaise with the authorities in Tanzania when conducting their investigations. We have agreed with the defence that they give us at least 14 days to set foot in Tanzania,” said the attorney.

She further submitted: “His wife has in the past communicated with potential witnesses in Tanzania. We ask the court to make an order that she does not communicate with anyone, whether telephonically, email or anything in Tanzania until we set foot in Tanzania.”

According to papers before court the man, John Leonard Massawe, on February 26 in Gaborone, with intent to harbour and exploit a female aged 18 years, trafficked her from Dodoma in Tanzania to Gaborone, Botswana where he harboured and used her for labour exploitation.

In defence of the accused, lawyer Martin Dingake submitted before presiding Magistrate Janet Phosa that the investigations should be treated with immediacy because they intend to argue for bail. “We hope they would have sufficient progress in the investigation in 14 days, because we intend to deal with the question of bail. The accused is self-employed and runs a business in Tlokweng, which has employees. He is a family man and has children,” said Dingake.

The case continues on December 30 at the Extension II Magistrate’s Court.

Editor's Comment
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