IN a saddening development that is tantamount to ridiculing the justice system in Zimbabwe, Tatiana Aleshina, a close aide of business tycoon Kenneth Raydon Sharpe, who heads a controversial property investment and development business concern, Augur Investments, has described the prosecution process in an on-going case involving the company, as ‘nonsense’.
Aleshina, who is said to be a person of ‘abusive’ traits, spewed venom on the prosecuting team after he flatly refused to answer questions from top Zimbabwean lawyer Alec Muchadehama during the cross examination process in which he accuses opposition politician Tendai Biti of verbally assaulting him.
In turn, Lawyer Muchadehama has since pleaded for court protection against the agonizingly abusive behavior from Sharpe’s aide.
Biti is representing a variety of companies that were allegedly swindled of various amounts of money by Augur Investments and its associated subsidiaries.
While reacting to Aleshina’s debasing remarks about the prosecution process, Magistrate Vongai Muchuchuti-Guwuriro told the Russian investor to retract her statement.
In his submissions, Muchadehama told the court that the questions he was asking Aleshina were relevant to the case, while adding that his pursuit was to expose how Sharpe’s friend was capitalizing on Biti so that he gets back to him for his legal representation of companies that are suing Augur Investments.
Fairclot Investments, which accuses Sharpe’s concern of swindling them millions of United States dollars in a botched airport road construction deal, is one of the companies which Biti represents.
It is understood that despite the company failing to meet the agreed terms in the deal, Augur Investments went ahead and claimed over 700 hectares of land valued at US$52 million that was agreed on as part of payment by the Harare City Council.
The Fairclot case has also brought to the surface the shady deals which the debatably discredited Augur Investments has been involved in within the landlocked southern African nation.
At one time last year, Augur Investiments was also accused of defrauding the country millions of dollars in unpaid stamp duty.