Breaking

Suspects in Kitgum Shop Break-ins Further Remanded

Senior Resident State Attorney Hamza Muzime told the court that the sureties presented by the suspects in court were not substantive given the magnitude of the case.
The Magistrates Court in Kitgum District has remanded six suspects accused of breaking into several shops and looting goods worth millions of shillings in Kitgum Municipality.

The suspects had on Tuesday appeared before the Kitgum Chief Magistrate Elizabeth Akullo for the hearing of their bail application. They had earlier been remanded to prison and denied bail when they appeared in court for mention of their case on August 9.

The prosecution states that the suspects broke into shops belonging to Geoffrey Kilama and Joyce Oyella located at Ongom Louis road in Central Division on July 29 and stole goods worth shillings 12 million. The suspects are Ronald Rubangakene aka the big, Richard Opala, Richard Okello, Sam Acire, Stephen Langoya, and Robert Olony who have been charged with two counts of theft and shop breaking. They however denied all the charges.

Four of the suspects Langoya, Opala, Olony, and Apire applied for bail and presented six sureties. 

But Senior Resident State Attorney Hamza Muzime told the court that the sureties presented by the suspects in court were not substantive given the magnitude of the case. 

For instance, Muzime highlighted that all the sureties presented were peasant farmers whose annual income were less than shillings one million and wondered how much each would be bonded given that goods lost were worth 12 million shillings. 

He also noted that some of the sureties were too young and closely related to the suspects which would be hard for them to compel the suspects to regularly attend the court.

According to Muzime, granting bail to the suspects would interfere with the recovery of other exhibits, the safety of witnesses and community members since they are considered habitual thugs and above all delay hearing of the case.

“Court should consider the safety of the community and the complainants, we are imagining what would happen if they are out because, in only one night, they were able to break into over 10 shops. The police reported that while they were in custody, such theft had decreased,” Muzime told the court.

Akullo didn’t make her ruling on the bail application by the suspects and the prayers made by the prosecution. She instead adjourned court till September 21 when she will deliver her judgement. Akullo further remanded the suspects to Kitgum Prison till September 21 when they reappear in court.

Keywords