Seakgatleng v S (MCHGB-000217-12)  BWHC 17 (8 March 2013)
IN THE HIGH COURT
OF BOTSWANA HELD AT LOBATSE
08 MARCH 2013
IN THE MATTER
person Attorney Mr L. Mokolwane
1. This is an
application for bail pending the Applicant’s trial. The
Applicant is facing three counts of rape which offences
to have been committed on different dates in Moshupa. The offences
were alleged to have been
the months of July 2011 and April 2012.
2. The principles
applicable to this type of application are well known. In MOGOTSI 8b
ANOTHER V THE STATE  BLR 142 Gyeke Dako J dealt extensively
with some of the relevant factors which a court should take into
account in considering an application
for bail, among these being: –
1. The nature of the
charge, the more serious the charge, the greater the incentive for
the accused person to abscond.
2. The strength of
the prosecution case.
3. The likelihood of
the accused interfering with the police witnesses.
4. The effect of the
delays in bringing an accused to trial.
5. Generally the
courts are to lean in favour of the liberty of the individual. This
is because of the presumption of innocence
which prevails prior to
accused being found guilty. However, a balance must be struck between
the interests of the accused and
the interests of the society as
well as safeguarding
of the interests of justice to avoid the occurrence of any acts which
might defeat such interests.
6. The application
is opposed by the DPP who filed affidavits resisting the application
as well as some witness statements which
provide prima facie
indication as to what could probably have occurred. On the statements
it is clear that there is strong evidence
connecting the Applicant to
the offences committed. I need not overemphasise the seriousness of
the charges faced by the Applicant.
The Applicant faces serious
consequences should he be convicted with a minimum sentence of 10
years. These are no trivial matters
which should easily be brushed
7. Taking all these
factors into account there is a reasonable likelihood of Applicant
committing a similar offence if admitted
to bail. He has pointed to a
number of factors which appear to be in his favour in the
application. He is a citizen. He does not
have travelling documents.
He is generally of good character and co-operates with the police.
8. Though these
factors may be strong they are outweighed by the factors militating
against the grant of bail especially the public
9. All matters
considered, the balance of convenience do not favour the grant of
bail. A case for bail pending trial not having
therefore the application is dismissed.
DELIVERED IN OPEN
COURT AT LOBATSE
ON THE 8TH MARCH
T. TAU JUDGE
Public Prosecutions – Legal practitioner for the Respondent