THE man who was arrested for killing a leopard that had attacked him in January while on a mopane worm (amacimbi) harvesting expedition at a farm in Matobo District, Matabeleland South Province has been acquitted.
Abednigo Moyo’s story, which was first broken by Sunday News made headlines internationally when he was arrested and faced a possible jail-term for poaching after he wrestled and killed the wild cat at Mgumela Farm.
However, on 23 March Plumtree court magistrate Ms Nomusa Ncube acquitted Moyo together with two other accused persons, Isaac Moyo and Walter Ncube. The trio was facing a charge for contravening Section 59 (2) of the Parks and Wildlife Act.
However, the owner of the farm, William Ncube was convicted and sentenced to three months in prison or a fine of $2 000 for being found in position of the dead animal. The court felt another man Majoni Dube who had accompanied Mr Ncube to his homestead carrying the carcass had no case to answer. Ms Rosemary Mbeure prosecuted.
In his submissions the accused persons’ lawyer, Mr Prince Butshe of Mathonsi Ncube Law Chambers argued that the leopard was killed in defence of human life. Contacted for a comment Mr Butshe confirmed the development.
“The three Abednigo Moyo, Isaac Moyo and Walter Ncube were all acquitted. The old man, William Ncube was convicted and sentenced to pay $2 000 or three months in prison. The three were acquitted because there was no evidence that they carried the carcass of the leopard after they killed it in defence of Abednigo. Ncube carried it to his home and he skinned it hence the conviction,” he said.
— Sunday Mail