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High Court turns down murder accused’s plea

Nat Molomo

 

MASERU — The High Court has turned down a murder suspect’s request for trial to be postponed for a week, which he said he needed to consult his lawyer.

Motebang Pholoana, 26, was instead granted two days.

His lawyer is Haae Phoofolo. 

Pholoana and Mahlomola Ramokoka, 24, who is still at large, are being accused of murdering a fellow Ha-Mphoto villager, Kefuoe Ncheke, on December 20 2004.

On Tuesday, Justice Nthomeng Majara, sitting with two assessors, told Pholoana: “I am not here to joke — this is an old case and is now ripe for trial.” 

The accused had also told the court he was a TB patient who could not follow proceedings in court on the basis of his health condition.

He however failed to produce medical records which he claimed were destroyed when his house was burnt down on a day he did not mention in court.

The state argued the accused was a full-time employee who could sit in court and follow proceedings, hence the need to carry on with the trial.

The accused then asked for more time with his lawyer, telling the court he had only met with his counsel that morning.

He wanted a week.

But the court could only grant Pholoana two days — Wednesday and Thursday — with trial set to continue on Friday.

The case has however been postponed to September 7.

Advocate Mosito Tšoeu-nyane, assisted by Advocate Moeketsi Thabane, appeared for the crown.

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