Arguments due in Moyo case

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IOL pic mar19 bongani moyo Independent Newspapers Escapee Bongani Moyo is brought into a press conference under heavy guard following his escape from Pretoria Central Prison. File photo: Sizwe Ndingane

Johannesburg - Arguments in mitigation and aggravation of the sentence of serial escape artist Bongani Moyo will be made in the Pretoria High Court on Tuesday.

Moyo appeared in the dock with Khumbulani Sibanda on Monday, after the court separated their trial from that of Leon Ncube and Thabani Sibanda.

Judge Natvarlal Ranchod postponed the case against Ncube and Thabani Sibanda to August 12, when it is scheduled to run until August 23.

Corroborating each other's versions, Moyo, 29, and Khumbulani Sibanda, 30, submitted sworn statements as part of a plea bargain with the State.

They said they were guilty and that they had always known their actions violated other people's freedoms.

The Zimbabweans are facing charges relating to a series of armed bank robberies in Gauteng and North West in 2011.

The charges against them include racketeering, robbery with aggravating circumstances, possession of unlicensed firearms, and escaping from lawful custody.

On Monday Moyo and Khumbulani said they understood the charges and were guilty as charged. Ranchod adjourned the matter until Tuesday for the submission of arguments.

In Moyo's statement he said prison officials helped him and Khumbulani escape from custody.

Part of his statement read: “While I was in prison, considering the inhuman and uncomfortable life my kids were experiencing back home and how my parents were struggling, I then planned with Khumbulani, Max, Nqo and another guy only known to Max, to make a life for them (the families).

“We planned to make money and the only way was to rob banks and provide for our families. I and Khumbulani then worked our way out of prison. We planned the escape and were successful with the help of prison officials.” - Sapa

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