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Charity Katanga’s Buses and Funds Forfeited to State Following Conviction Based Forfeiture Case

Charity-Katanga1

Lusaka, Zambia, 02.07.2024 -Today, the Lusaka Subordinate Court has ordered the forfeiture of 10 Higer buses and K1,522,005.15 found in the account of Chibeka Express Ltd, following a Conviction Based Forfeiture Application by the State. This comes after Charity Katanga, former Deputy Inspector General of Police, was convicted in February for possessing tainted property.

Charity Katanga was handed a three-year jail term on the February 19, this year on charges of possessing 10 Higer buses, valued at K26,282,770, which were found to be proceeds of crime, contrary to Section 71(1) of the Forfeiture of Proceeds of Crime Act (FPOCA) No. 19 of 2010. The buses and funds in the Chibeka Express Ltd account at Stanbic Bank Ndola Main Branch were determined to be tainted properties.

Presiding Chief Resident Magistrate at Lusaka Sibordinate Court, Honourable Davies Chibwili found that the funds and buses must suffer the same fate, declaring them forfeited to the state.

After the conviction earlier this year, the prosecution led by Senior State Advocate Mr. Mukuma Chilila Chipawa applied for the forfeiture of the buses and the funds in the company’s account. The court has today found that the properties were indeed tainted, thereby granting the State’s application.

At trial in the criminal case Magistrate Chibwili emphasised that the evidence provided by the defence was insufficient and that Katanga failed to satisfactorily explain the source of the funds used to purchase the buses. He highlighted that the tainted nature of the initial funds used to acquire the buses meant that all subsequent acquisitions were similarly tainted.

Today Magistrate Chibwili stated, “The buses having been found to have been tainted properties, it follows that whatever was realised using them was also tainted and subject to the same orders as the buses themselves. I find the funds in the account to be tainted property and together with the 10 Higer Buses named in the original indictment, order their forfeiture to the state in line with Section 10 of the Forfeiture of Proceeds of Crime Act No. 19 of 2010 of the Laws of Zambia.”

The ruling sends a clear message about the consequences of engaging in fraudulent activities, particularly for individuals in positions of responsibility. The court’s decision underscores the importance of integrity and honesty in public office.

Stay tuned for further updates on this and other cases on the National Prosecution Authority website and social media pages.

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