By Mary Taruvinga
HIGH Court judge, Esther Charehwa has dropped Hopewell Chin’ono charges in which the top journalist was being accused of publishing falsehoods.
This follows Chin’ono’s successful appeal in which he argued he was being charged under a non-existent law.
Charehwa upheld the judgement but only the operative part was read in court.
A full judgement will be made available later.
“The charge has been quashed by the High Court. The court ruled that he was charged under a non-existent law as we complained. We said this from the word go. Our client was just being persecuted,” said his lawyer Harrison Nkomo in an interview with NewZimbabwe.com.
Chin’ono was being charged under Section 31 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act which deals with “publishing or communicating false statements prejudicial to the State”.
It was his contention that the statute was struck down by the Constitutional Court in 2014 in a matter brought by two Zimbabwe Independent newspaper journalists.
Charges against him arose in January this year after he allegedly shared a social media video in which a local woman was allegedly accusing a police operative of killing her baby.
The filmmaker and investigative journalist however still has two pending criminal case against him.