Harare | IN a move to get her client ‘mai tt’ out of jail, Mai TT’s lawyer, Admire Masango petitioned for a fine on the grounds of her being a single mother of two, who also has civil proceedings against her, and is HIV positive.
Convicted thief Felistas ‘Mai TT’ Murata will spend two more nights in custody and now faces the grim possibility of an extended term behind bars.
A vetting process is underway to establish if she has violated more than one order, to perform community service, in the past.
It was established yesterday that she defaulted on a court order, to perform community service once, following a conviction for assault.
Now, there is a process to try and establish if she violated more such orders in the past.
Mai TT appears to be in real trouble when sentence, for theft of trust property, is passed tomorrow.
The comedienne had been due to be sentenced yesterday.
However, a vetting process for community service flagged that she did not perform community service, as ordered by a court, some years ago, after being convicted for assault.
Magistrate Munashe Chibanda pushed back her ruling when the new details emerged.
“I understand she was supposed to be coming for sentencing, but we have received a report that she may not be eligible for community service.
“It is being said she defaulted on community service in an assault matter where she was supposed to perform community service at the Budiriro Council office.
“That information needs to be verified as it has a bearing on whether she is a suitable candidate for community service or not.
“The Community Service Office said they need more time to verify so the matter will be remanded to Friday,” said prosecutor Monalisa Magwenzi.
Mai TT’s lawyer, Admire Masango, cried foul saying he was baffled as the State had earlier asked the court to treat her as a first-time offender.
He then petitioned for a fine on the grounds of her being a single mother of two, who also has civil proceedings against her, and is HIV positive.
The prosecutor, however, requested a custodial sentence for the theft of the vehicle, adding that Mai TT had committed a serious offence, which carried severe consequences, including the loss of the complainant’s income.
Magistrate Chibanda ruled in favour of the State, but only gave the Community Service Office one day to make the verifications.
“I will give the community service officer till tomorrow to verify these previous convictions as the court needs that information in making its decision on sentence,” she said.
Earlier on, both counsels had filed their aggravation and mitigation.
Mai TT’s lawyer claimed that the State had earlier asked the court to treat her as a first-time offender and petitioned for a fine on the grounds of her being a single mother of two.
He argued that the offence was not serious and Mai TT had learnt her lesson through the conviction.
However, the prosecutor said although Mai TT might be a female ‘first offender’, she had started in the deep end of crime commission.
“Let there be no doubt, this is a serious offence.
“She wasted the State’s resources where evidence was clear that she took property that was entrusted to her and gave it to a third party.
“She was dishonest in her conduct and deprived the complainant of his income by keeping the car for three months.
“A strong message ought to be sent to would-be offenders that such conduct will never go unpunished,” Magwenzi said.