SUSPECTED drug baron Abdul Nsembo (45) has decided to surrender to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), requesting him to enter into a plea-bargaining agreement in the criminal case involving trafficking in narcotic drugs he is facing.
He told Senior Resident Magistrate Kelvin Mhina at the Kisutu Resident Magistrate’s Court in Dar es Salaam that he had written a letter to the DPP in order to dispose of the matter, which has been pending since May 2019.
This is a litmus test to the DPP, as it will be the first case to enter into such agreement.
It is the requirement of the law under Section 194A (2) of the Criminal Procedure Act (CPA), as amended by the Written Laws (Miscellaneous Amendments) (No.4) Act of 2019, for the accused or his advocate to inform the court of such arrangement when he or she writes to the DPP for plea-bargaining process.
Senior State Attorney Wankyo Simon, for the prosecution, told the court that he had noted the report and would communicate with the DPP’s office for any developments on the matter.
The magistrate adjourned the case to November 22, 2019 for another mention. In the trial, Nsembo is charged jointly with his wife, Shamim Mwasha.
The couple was arraigned in connection with the case on May 13, 2019 charged with trafficking in 232.70 grams of Heroin Hydrochloride, which are narcotic drugs.
They were not allowed to enter a plea to the charge because the lower court lacked jurisdiction to handle the case in terms of Section 26 (3) of the Economic and Organized Crime Control Act.
Under the circumstances, the magistrate informed the accused that their case will be tried by the Economic, Corruption and Organized Crime Division of the High Court.
The magistrate further told the pair that under Section 26 (4) of the Economic and Organized Crime Control Act, his court lacked jurisdiction to entertain any bail application.
He thus ordered the accused top remain in remand. Prosecuting, the trial attorney told the court that the accused persons, who reside at Mbezi Beach, committed the offence on May 1, 2019 at Mbezi Beach area within Kinondoni District in the city.
It was reported by the Drug Control and Enforcement Authority (DCEA) that Nsembo, who is popularly known as Abdukandida, is a lord in the drug trade network and is known in various countries, including Brazil and the United States.
Nsembo was arrested by DCEA in May 2019 at midnight while hiding on the ceiling at his home in Mbezi Beach, Dar es Salaam.
He was arrested alongside his wife Shamim Mwasha for allegedly having between 560 to 700 grams of heroin found after being searched at their home for six hours.
Speaking on the issue, DCEA’s Operations Commissioner, Lieutenant-Colonel Fredrick Milanzi, claimed that Nsembo was among the major drug dealers who had been investigated and searched for a long time.
“You see Nsembo is a young person; Nsembo is not a minor in the drug trade network. He has a large network, if you ask them they will tell you he is so tricky and has been doing this business for some time now.
For these people to find them with two to three kilogrammes is not strange,” he is quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, a businessman, George Mpalala appeared before the same court yesterday charged with obtaining over 33m/- from Missionary Sister of the Holy Eucharist of Arusha by false pretences and money laundering.
He was not allowed to enter a plea to the charges before Principal Resident Magistrate Huruma Shaidi because they fall under the Economic and Organised Crime Control Act.
The case was adjourned to November 25, 2019 for mention, as investigations are incomplete.
The magistrate ordered the accused to remain in remand because the money laundering offence is unbailable.
State Attorney Saada Mohamed told the court that the accused person committed the offence on March 15, 2019 at Mbezi Luis in Ubungo District.
With intent to defraud or deceive, the 47-year-old resident of Mbezi Luis allegedly obtained 33,175,000/- from the Missionary Sister of the Holy Eucharist of Arusha , intending to register a new organization, which he knew to be false.
On money laundering, the court heard that on the same day and place, the businessman obtained the money while knowing that the amount was proceeds of a predicate offence of obtaining money by false pretences to that of money laundering.