A case in which a man was charged with two counts of motor-vehicle theft was postponed again on 30 July at the Katutura Magistrate’s Court, close to a decade after the suspect was initially arrested and charged.
Then 26-year-old Crechen Muyoro was arrested on 31 October 2007 in connection with two separate motor-vehicle theft cases.
It is alleged that Muyoro initially attempted to steal a VW Golf sedan belonging to Etienne de Villiers on 17 November 2006, and subsequently allegedly stole an Isuzu pick-up truck belonging to Daniel van der Lith on 28 September 2007.
Although the accused pleaded not guilty to the charges, claiming to have an alibi, the court heard from eyewitness Alfons Shikeama, who placed Muyoro at the scene of the first crime.
Shikeama, who worked at the Sign Shop in then-Krupp Street when the incident took place, said he was at work one afternoon when his boss asked him to run a few errands for the company.
He proceeded to his car when he noticed a black man sitting in De Villiers’ car, which alarmed him because the owner of the car is white.
The witness claimed that the man in the car, who he identified as Muyoro, went on to reverse and drive the car. However, the car’s wheels clamped and the accused could not drive further.
Shikeama went on to say that the accused then jumped out of the car at this point, which is when he and a security guard began chasing after him.
When he realised that the accused was too fast, he turned back to get his car while the security guard chased on foot, he testified.
The accused is said to have run into a riverbed, and realising that the witness drove to block the exit to the riverbed, Muyoro tried to make a getaway in a taxi.
He and the security guard stopped the taxi from driving any further, and as a result Muyoro allegedly barricaded himself in the taxi and threatened to kill them if he ever met then in the Katutura township.
The police arrived on the scene, and the accused was apprehended and taken into custody.
Court transcripts noted that the accused claimed innocence, saying he was mistaken for the suspect because he was visiting relatives who live in that area when the crime took place.
The second crime took place almost a year after the initial arrest. However, it remains unclear whether or not the suspect had been released on bail when he committed the alleged second theft.
Details of how the second crime took place were not clear, but the stolen pick-up truck was found broken in the north of the country.
The witnesses in that matter said the accused and an accomplice approached them at their garage, claiming that their car had broken down between Oshivelo and Omuthiya, and they needed a tow-in truck.
When the mechanic inspected the car, he realised that it needed a new waterpipe, which he fixed. He, however, noted that the licence plate numbers on the vehicle were fake.
At this stage, it is also not clear as to who exactly alerted the Namibian Police about the car.
However, once they knew of the stolen car, they approached the mechanics who had fixed the car, who helped identify the suspect through pictures the police had.
More witnesses and the accused are still to testify in the matter as the trial was only partly-held, and then postponed to 3 December this year.
Court documents did not indicate why the case was postponed again.
In the meantime, the suspect is out on bail of Nfirstname.lastname@example.org