Alleged 'hookers' freed

HARARE - Key State witnesses failed to pitch up yesterday for the trial of alleged commercial sex workers arrested under “Operation Zvanyanya”.

The group was arrested last Friday in the Avenues and other hide-outs in a dragnet meant to rid Harare of prostitution.

Magistrate Blessing Murwisi said the State would proceed by way of summons. Those who had managed to pay bail and those who failed were all set free.

The police officers who were set to give their testimony absconded, prompting the trial magistrate to release them.

The group is being charged with soliciting for the purposes of prostitution.

It is the State case that on July 5 in the Avenues area and in the city centre, dozens of women were caught waiting outside lodges and streets.

The court heard that the women were prancing around the streets with the aim of being hired as prostitutes and being paid for their services.

Defence counsel for the 14 women who had failed to pay the $200 bail, Tawanda Zhuwarara and Kennedy Masiye, argued that charges were unclear as the charge sheet did not specify where the women were found exactly and what they were actually doing.

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