Hwange Court Dismisses Defence Applications In Cecil Trial

The Hwange Magistrates’ Court has dismissed two applications made by the defence council in the matter of the holder of a professional hunter`s license Theodor Bronkhorst who is being accused of failing to prevent an illegal hunt that led to the killing of Cecil the lion.

 The two applications were filed on the 28th of last month.

The defence council`s first application was for exception as it argued the charge levelled against Bronkhorst was vague, unclear and not precise.

The defence also argued that a section of any act does not define an unlawful hunt.

But the court ruled that the charge is clear and Bronkhorst failed to execute his duty of preventing an unlawful hunt as a holder of a professional hunter’s licence.

The court also noted that the defence council failed to provide good reasons for the case to be considered for exception and ruled that the matter should proceed to trial.

On the second application to refer the case to the Constitutional Court, the lower court ruled that the reasons for the application are devoid of merit.

It concluded that the reasons for an application for referral was made to delay the proceedings and are therefore frivolous.

Following the ruling, the defence council has filed two applications, one for review at the High Court and another to the Constitutional Court to determine if the rights of the accused will be infringed if the trial proceeds at the magistrates court.

The case has been remanded to the 20th of November.