Suspected Cattle Rustlers Plead Not Guilty


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Three men caught in October last year with two cattle carcases suspected to have been stolen are set to stand trial on November 20th following their plea of not guilty to the offence.

The accused persons Elvis Chikore (34), Monga Seboko (42) and Thabo Lethata (24) are said to have on the 24th October 2022 found with two cow carcasses in Botshabelo which they allegedly failed to provide proof of ownership.

The first accused person, Chikore was also charged for entering Botswana illegally through an un-gazetted area in 2004. He is said to have been illegally residing in Botswana since then. Chiroke’s co-accused persons are currently out on bail while he remains in custody as the prosecution fears that he might skip the country and abscond standing for trial. 

When appearing before Maun Magistrate Keneilwe Kgoadi this week, the accused persons pleaded not guilty to the offence. The first accused person, Chikore told court that his plea of not guilty is based on the fact that the carcases were from two cows which he claims he bought from Lethata (third accused person).

He indicated that during trial he will present two witnesses who will give proof that he actually bought the cattle and later on slaughtered them. He indicated that the witnesses will also give evidence of where the remains of the slaughtered cow were.

For his part Lethata concurred with the first accused person that the cattle are his and that he sold them to him. He indicated that he will present two witnesses and his branding certificate to prove that the cattle belonged to him.

Meanwhile the second accused person, Seboko accused the investigating officer for failing to assist them acquire CCTV footage of a certain filling station which he claims will significantly contribute to prove their innocence further requesting to be assisted with such.  

State prosecutor has since informed court that they will present six witnesses out of which four are police officers who made the arrest, one veterinary officer and another witness who was present when the accused persons tried to sell the carcass. 

The presiding magistrate advised the accused persons to make an application regarding the CCTV footage issue further advising them to ensure that their witnesses are present during trial as well as for them to avail all the needed documents for their defence.

Remanded Chikore will appear on the 9th of May for mention while his co-accused persons will appear on the 20th November for commencement of trial.


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