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Borrowdale Land Dispute Rages On

A fraud case filed by Harare businessman Kenneth Raydon Sharpe against land developer Georgios Katsimberis took another twist after the accused person’s lawyer Tendai Biti dismissed the complainants’ representatives as puppets who could not testify against his client.

Katsimberis is accused of furnishing Simbarashe Kadye, a representative of Pokugara Properties in Borrowdale with unapproved building plans between 15 June 2016 and 26 July 2018, an allegation that he denies.

In his submissions before a Harare Magistrates court recently, Biti said the complainant Kenneth Raydon Sharpe who is a land baron had an agreement with Katsimberis who was supposed to provide finances for the development project.

“The complainants consist of one Kenneth Raydon Sharpe who is not here and is one of the witnesses but he is the Principal the rest are puppets. For the agreement of construction, so one was to provide land, the land baron was to provide land and the accused person was to provide financing of this estate called Pokugara. So the land baron called Ken Raydon Sharpe was to provide the land and the accused person was to provide the finances,” Biti said.

He referred the state to letters addressed to the suspended City of Harare Town Clerk Hosiah Chisango by Chinawa and Associates dated 28th of June 2019.

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According to Biti, Chinawa and Associates complained to City of Harare about a letter written to them on the 26th of June (2 days before their letter) which revealed the municipality’s knowledge of Katsimberis’ building plans which they now denied knowledge of.

“Chinawa and Associates are complaining to the City of Harare to say the letter you wrote to us on the 26th of June 2018 is confirming that the accused person George Katsimberis actually had the plans, why are you saying this now. This is the letter from Chinawa and Associates, they are complaining to the City of Harare, why are they saying there was no plan.”

Biti added that sometime in 2018 under case HC 8943/18, in the High Court of Zimbabwe, the accused filed an interdict to stop Pokugara Properties (Pvt) LTD representatives (as Complainants) and the City of Harare from demolishing the show house in question.

“In the matter from Chinawa and Associates now, they are now saying to City of Harare, there are plans but in your affidavit in case number HC201631, the one I have just given you, you say there were no plans.

“The letter of the 26th of June from the City of Harare to Chinawa Law Chambers becomes critical for the purposes of the accused’s defence. The letter from the City of Harare to Chinawa and Associates which is being responded to by Chinawa and Associates in their letter of 28th which I will present before the court become critical because it contains evidence that is favourable to the accused person. It confirms the accused’s defence that there was a lie”. he said

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Biti said his client legally obtained all relevant permits and the complainant resiled from the agreement and argues that there was never an agreement.

The trial is pending with defence requesting the three letters written by Chinawa Law Chambers dated, 31st of May 2019, 12th of June 2019 and 14th of June 2019 respectively and will be back in court by way of summons.

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