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Former Malawi President Peter Mutharika Denied Access To Bank Accounts

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The Malawi High Court has said the court order which the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) obtained to freeze the bank accounts of Former President Peter Mutharika froze in November but was renewed and dismissed an application by Mutharika seeking to reserve a Restriction Notice (RN) issued by graft-busting body.

In August last year ACB froze the personal Bank Accounts of Mutharika and his wife, Gertrude, in a probe seeking to uncover his role in the K5million cement scandal.

The bureau argues that Mutharika’s tax number was used to import cement duty-free between 2018 and 2019.

Mutharika through his lawyer Samuel Tembenu applied to the High Court to reserve the restriction notice.

The court has therefore dismissed Mutharika’s application to lift a restriction notice which the ACB put on the former President’s Bank accounts at National Bank of Malawi and Standard Bank.

Judge Rowland Mbvundula said at the time Mutharika made his application, there was no restriction notice because it had expired in November. “Section 23 (3) of the Criminal Procedures Act (CPA) is clear that the respondent may cancel an existing restiction notice. Consequently the person against whom the restriction notice was issued is free to access his bank accounts without seeking the respondent’s or anyone else’s permission, including that of the bank to which the notice was issued,” Said Mbvundula in his determination.

“In the present case, therefore, the applicant was, as of November 25, 2020 (the date when he filed within application to reverse the RN), at liberty to access his bank accounts herein without the aid of the court, unless he was restrained from doing so (which was not alleged) as there was no restriction notice in existence,” he added.

However the former President may not be able to withdraw money from his bank accounts because the ACB managed to have the restriction notice renewed a few days after it had expired.

Justice Mbvundula therefore dismissed the application with costs.

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Crime

Radical Genocide Denier, Idamange To Appear Before Court On Thursday

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She was arrested on February 15, 2021, at around 4 PM, during a joint operation between Police and Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB).

Police, upon her arrest, said that since January 31, 2021, Idamange Iryamugwiza Yvonne, 42, had “exhibited behavior that mixes politics, criminality, and madness on different media platforms. This conduct invited the attention and close scrutiny of law enforcement.”

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The suspect is a popular YouTuber who claims to be an activist, but the content she publishes on her channel has caused irrational reactions including, largely, serving as a mockery to genocide survivors and negating facts surrounding the Genocide against the Tutsi, according to observers.

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Crime

Sarkozy Could Request To Be Detained At Home

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Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy qualifies to request to serve his prison sentence from home, court said on Monday.

The 66-year-old Sarkozy was found guilty of corruption and abuse of office and was ultimately sentenced to a three-year prison sentence with two years suspended.

Taking into account the two years suspended, the sentence of one year jail means it is unlikely Sarkozy will physically go to prison, a punishment that in France usually applies to jail terms in excess of two years.

Sarkozy reamins free, since no arrest warrant has been issued.

Sarkozy was president of France from 2007 to 2012, would be entitled to request to be detained at home, but could be obliged to wear an electronic bracelet.

The prosecution had asked for a four-year prison term, with two years suspended. The crime of corruption of an official carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.

Only one other French president, Sarkozy’s political mentor Jacques Chirac, was put on trial after leaving office, but he was excused from having to attend his 2011 corruption trial because of ill health.

Sarkozy’s two co-defendants, the lawyer Thierry Herzog and former senior judge Gilbert Azibert, were also found guilty and given the same sentence as Sarkozy.

Nicolas Sarkozy will face another trial later this month along with 13 other people on charges related to the alleged illegal financing of his 2012 presidential campaign.

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