Yemeni national pleaded by mistake

Windhoek-Having taken the stand already and pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder during the start of his trial, Yemeni national Murad Esmail Ali Al-Hersh was informed it was a mistake since investigations into his case have not yet been finalised.

Thirty-nine-year-old Al-Hersh made his plea on a charge of murder on August 15 in connection with the execution style killing of 35-year-old Malian national Gamby Maya.

The prosecution charges that Al-Hersh directly and unlawfully killed Maya. Maya was found with a gunshot between his eyes for allegedly money he could not account for.

He was shot dead while seated in his green Hyundai Elantra 2014 model car, which was later found abandoned in Olympia residential area.

Things took a twist yesterday in the Windhoek Magistrate's Court when Al-Hersh made an appearance from prison before magistrate Jo-Rina Jagger.

State prosecutor Cedric Tubeho Mundia informed the court that the prosecutor general's decision was not yet available.

The docket was forwarded to the prosecutor general, however she could not make a decision due to the forensic report still being outstanding. The docket has been sent back to the investigative officer for further investigations, explained Mundia.

Al-Hersh's defence lawyer Norman Tjombe said the matter has been postponed several times for further investigations. He explained his client took the stand to plea on August 15 when investigations were not finalised and the prosecution was well aware of that.

The accused has been in custody now for 13 months and at each occasion the matter has been postponed for further investigations? questioned Tjombe.

Tjombe requested that the matter be withdrawn from the court roll provisionally and the accused be summoned after the investigations have been finalised.

Magistrate Jagger ruled she would only grant a final remand for the prosecutor general's decision and not for further investigations, adding that it is in the hands of the state to ensure that investigations are finalised.

Jagger postponed the matter to November 20, remanding Al-Hersh in custody.

Source: New Era Newspaper Namibia