Power and Politics

Gold Scandal: Egyptian, Botros, wants DEC commissioner, Chitamba, cross examined


Egyptian, Michael Adel Michel Botros, has opposed government’s submission in which it urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Court to dismiss his application to cross examine the Drug Enforcement Commission Assistant Commissioner, Martin Chitamba.

This was to test the veracity of his evidence to warrant the forfeiture of the properties seized in the gold scam scandal.

On October 10, 2023, the Director of Public Prosecutions filed a notice of motion seeking a Non-Conviction Based forfeiture order of the Jet plane, US$5.6 million and other properties seized at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport.

Read more: Govt applies for non-conviction forfeiture of jet used in gold scam scandal

Chitamba submitted that the said properties which also included 602 pieces of suspected gold, five pistols with 126 rounds of ammunition and 11 pistol magazines, a drilling machine and a Central Processing Unit (CPU) were tainted.

But Botros applied that Chitamba be cross examined based on the fact that the affidavit deposed to was riddled with speculation.

In his latest filed arguments, Botros stated that Chitamba raised several contentious matters, hence the need to quizz him.

“We submit that there is no law in our statute books that gives the state blanket powers to adopt any procedure when it comes to prosecuting or defending matters. Further, the state shall not be prejudiced in anyway if this court grants the interested party the requisite leave to cross examine deponent.

“We submit that the interested party is surprised with the State’s fear to have their witness cross examined as if Martin Chitamba is truly a witness of fact he will comfortably take the stand,” he submitted.

He urged the court to exercise its discretion judiciously.

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