Fungai Lupande Court Reporter
Abundant Life Global Ministries (ALGM) leader Bishop Danmore Magorimbo (45), who was accused of raping a married congregant at his church claiming to be “cleansing her of evil spirits transmitted by her husband,” was acquitted on Wednesday.
Harare magistrate Mr Adonia Masawi cleared Magorimbo of the charges because of the unreliability of the complainant’s evidence.
Prosecutor Mr Michael Reza, informed the court of his intention to appeal at the High Court against the acquittal.
Magorimbo could not hide his jubilation as his family and church members cheered.
In his judgment, Mr Masawi said the complainant’s evidence was contradictory.
“The fact that she initially believed that sex would cleanse her leaves a lot to be desired considering she was a Christian woman,” said Mr Masawi.
“Why would she continue to go to the same church for six months after the alleged rape, and continue to refer to one who violated her as a spiritual father?” he asked.
“However, the tape that was played in court would pass with flying colours as a pornographic tape than a Christian tape,” said Mr Masawi.
“Confusion on her evidence ate into her credibility. Why didn’t she report the matter to the police after gathering her senses? How can a grown up woman forget the day she was raped within a period of a year?”
On May 12 this year Mr Masawi acquitted Magorimbo on another charge of attempted rape and indecent assault.
Allegations were that sometime in April last year at the church’s premises at 1 Hampden Road in Belvedere, Magorimbo approached the woman in the prayer room and invited her to his office.
It is alleged that he raped the woman claiming to drive away evil spirits transmitted into her body by her husband through sexual intercourse.