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‘Gold’ scandal: Lawyers to Zambian suspects cry foul, allege foriegn nationals enjoying luxurious stay at govt lodge


Information has emerged that foreign nationals arrested in the infamous gold scandal are enjoying a luxurious stay at a named government lodge in Lusaka’s Kalundu area while Zambian suspects were still languishing in dirty police cells.

Makebi Zulu Advocates, lawyers representing one of the Zambian suspects, Shadreck Kasanda, has alleged that the foreign suspects who were detained at Chelstone Police Station were moved from the holding cells to a lodge.

Read more: Four detained in connection with ‘gold’ scam allege ill-treatment, to appear in court Wednesday

However, Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) Director General, Nason Banda, told journalists that all the nine foreign suspects were in safe custody and would soon appear in Court.

In a letter addressed to DEC and the Inspector General of Police, the law firm accused the joint security wings of preferential treatment of foreign suspects while discriminating against Kasanda and three other Zambian suspects.

They, therefore, cautioned the security operatives to desist from preferential treatment of detainees while demanding the release of Kasanda on bond.

“While our client and other Zambian suspects remain unlawfully in unbearable conditions in detention in police cells, it has been made known to us that the suspects of foreign origin have been lodged in luxury at a known government lodge in Kalundu, a place not gazetted to hold suspects, despite having them charged and arrested,” read the letter.

Banda said he was not aware about such a development and could only confirm that the said suspects were in safe custody.

“All the nine foreign suspects are in safe custody and will be taken to court. Some maybe witnesses, you will know who is involved or not once they appear in open court,” he said.

Kasanda, Mahogany Air Chief Executive Officer, Jim Belemu, Oswald Diangamo and commercial pilot Patrick Kawanu are the four Zambians arrested in connection with the scandal.

Kasanda was charged with the offence of disposal of property suspected of being proceeds of crime contrary to Section 71(1) of the Forfeiture of Proceeds Crime Act no.19 of 2010.

Last week DEC seized an Egyptian private aircraft loaded with about US$5.7 million cash, 605 golden coins in addition to five guns with 126 bullets.

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