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Judge reserves ruling in Sameer Karim case

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High Court Judge Annabel Mtalimanja has reserved her ruling on whether the State should add a money laundering charge to businessman Sameer Karim’s K150 million fraud case which he is answering alongside Victoria Chanza of Ecobank.

Lawyers representing Karim are seeking a review of the proceedings at the Chief Resident Magistrate’s court which granted the State its plea.

Speaking to journalists after they appeared in court Tuesday, one of the lawyers representing Karim, Alex Nampota, said they were waiting for the court’s ruling on the matter.

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“We were in court to ask the court to review the amendment the lower court had allowed the State during the last hearing of the case. We feel it is not justifiable,” Nampota said.

Director of Public Prosecutions Steve Kayuni also said they were waiting for the court’s ruling.

“We will wait for the court to review the matter,” Kayuni said.

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Last week, the defence served the State with an order by the High Court to review the decision by the Chief Resident Magistrate on September 17 to add money laundering to the charges against the two accused persons.

The defence is questioning the rationale behind the decision by the lower court to allow the State to add a new charge at the close of the prosecution’s case.

In the case, Karim, trading as Pioneer Investments, alongside Chanza, is accused of forgery and fraud for alleged use of false documents to obtain a K150-million loan from Ecobank.

The documents allegedly helped the businessman to secure the loan on the pretext that he had a contract with the Malawi Police Service (MPS).

Further details of the case indicate that Karim obtained the loan with a promise to pay back using proceeds from the MPS food ration deal but never did.

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