Having already spent ten years behind bars for a previous conviction, a serial car thief saw his latest bid for freedom hit a red light when he was further remanded in custody by Village Magistrate Court last Friday.
47-year-old Morwadi Maselesele Marangwane is accused of stealing three cars in a hectic 22-day crime spree earlier this year.
After serving a decade in the slammer for car theft, Marangwane left prison a free man last November.
However, shortly after his release, he was arrested again after allegedly stealing another vehicle.
Although he was given bail in that case, it appears the suspect did not learn his lesson.
On or about 12 January near Tlokweng, Marangwane allegedly stole a white Nissan X-Trail valued at P51, 200 belonging to Mogo Auto Electrician.
Then, on or about 29 January, near Narita Motors in the Kweneng District, he reportedly made away with an unlicensed Golf 5 GTI worth P80, 000.
Four days later, near Steady Steps Motors, Marangwane is said to have stolen a white Mercedez-Benz C200 valued at P110, 000.
Urging court to keep the suspect locked up, State Prosecutor, Superintendent Joshua Ntau said, “The accused is not a suitable bail candidate and chances are that he is likely to commit similar offence should he be granted bail. He led us to Moshupa where the Golf 5 was recovered and to Kopong at his girlfriend’s house where the Mercedes Benz was recovered. The investigations are not yet complete and we fear he could interfere with the witnesses if granted bail.”
Although he was fighting a losing battle, Marangwane pleaded for bail, arguing that the evidence delivered by the prosecution was unsupported.
The accused maintained his innocence and further told court his public transport business was suffering in his absence.
He also promised to abide by any bail conditions the court might set.
Unfortunately for the convicted thief, no conditions were set as Magistrate, Tshepo Thedi chose to remand him instead.
Despite stressing Marangwane was ‘innocent until proven guilty’, the Magistrate explained it was the court’s duty to ‘protect society from suffering at the hands of repeat offenders’.
“Taking into consideration the best interest of the society, prosecution and the accused, I will remand the accused person in custody until completion of the investigations. You have the right to appeal this ruling in 14 days before the High Court,” ruled Thedi.