State rejects plea bargain offer by Muchemwa, co-accused in alleged property crime case


The State has declined a plea bargain offer from Francis Muchemwa and his co-accused in a case involving the possession of property suspected to be proceeds of crime.

Muchemwa, along with two others, had submitted a plea bargain request on May 13, 2024, under Rule 8(2)(F) of the Economic and Financial Crimes.

However, the State did not provide any feedback on the matter.

Read more: Muchemwa tackles anti-graft agency over moves to have his properties forfeited to govt

During a court session before Lusaka Chief Resident Magistrate, Davies Chibwili, on Monday, the defense team requested an adjournment to further consider the plea bargain.

However, State prosecutor Daniel Ngwira argued against it, stating that the offense of property possession did not qualify for a plea bargain due to the absence of a lesser equivalent offense, unlike crimes such as murder which can be reduced to manslaughter.

Ngwira explained that while plea bargains had been facilitated in previous cases, this particular situation did not meet the necessary criteria.

The matter has been adjourned until the next session.

In this case, Muchemwa, residing in the Silverest area of Chongwe, and two others pleaded not guilty to charges of possession of property suspected to be proceeds of crime and failure to comply with the provisions of the Income Tax Act, as stipulated in Section 99(1) read with Section 98 of the Income Tax Act Chapter 323 of the Laws of Zambia.

Muchemwa is jointly charged with two individuals associated with companies named Friltech Networks Zambia Ltd and Altitude Properties Ltd.

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