25 Jun 2019 17:40pm
OTJIWARONGO, 25 JUN (NAMPA) A 30-year-old man accused of being involved in the poaching of a black rhino at a game reserve near Otjiwarongo in March this year, was on Tuesday granted bail of N.dollars 10 000.
Eeno Anguwo, who was arrested at Omuthiya in the Oshikoto Region on 15 April 2019 after he was connected to a syndicate of poachers who allegedly shot and killed a black rhino bull valued at N.dollars 800 000, has been in and out of the Otjiwarongo Magistrates Court, fighting to secure bail through his privately instructed lawyer, Pieter Greyling.
The State, through its public prosecutor Jatiel Mudamburi, had objected to the granting of bail, citing the seriousness of the matter and the fear of the accused interfering with the State witnesses or intimidating them, as well as fears that he would abscond.
A single State witness, who is also the police investigating officer in the matter, Daniel Wilbard, was called to court to testify against Anguwos bail application.
Wilbard narrated to the court how Anguwo was involved in the alleged poaching syndicate as well as how he and the four other accused allegedly transported a pair of rhino horns from a game reserve farm outside Otjiwarongo via Oshakati to Outapi in the Omusati Region.
Wilbard said that it was in Omusati where the then suspected poachers had allegedly tried to sell the horns to an undercover police officer who arrested them at Epalela.
However, Greyling dismissed all grounds of the State to object granting of bail to his client, saying Anguwo is innocent until found guilty by a competent court and therefore keeping him in custody is not in the interest of the general public or administration of justice.
Greyling said Anguwo has gainful employment at Omuthiya, where he works as an accountant for the government, adding that he has a responsibility of looking after his immediate family and that it would be unfair for him not to be granted bail as the trial continues.
Magistrate Karel Muyeghu, after listening to both arguments between Monday and Tuesday, granted bail on condition that Anguwo surrenders his passport to the investigating officer, report to the Omuthiya Police Station on Wednesdays and Fridays and that he not travel outside Omuthiya without notifying the police.
Anguwo and his lawyer agreed and promised to adhere to the bail conditions, and then immediately posted the N.dollars 10 000 bail on Tuesday.
His four alleged accomplices - Vemukuta Tjipurua, 49, Kaukamburua Tjingee, 32, Justice Embula, 49, Sakeus Ekango, and the 40-years-old Issaskar Paulus Kadhila - are remanded in custody at Otjiwarongo and expected to return to court together with Anguwo on 04 July 2019.