NEWLY-appointed State House media director Clayson Hamasaka has sued the state, seeking damages for malicious and wrongful prosecution as well as damages for false imprisonment, among other issues.
According to the statement of claim filed in the Lusaka High Court, Hamasaka stated that on or about July 9, 2013, he was subjected to an arbitrary house and personal search at his house on plot number 12246 Woodlands Extension in Lusaka by a combined team of Drug Enforcement Commission and Zambia Police officers among other agents of the state.
He noted that according to the search warrant, the said officers were looking for drugs and other illegal substances which the Plaintiff was alleged to be dealing in.
“After the search, which lasted between 23 hours on the 9th of July 2013 and 05 hours the following day, during which time the plaintiff and his family could not sleep, the officers confiscated computers, phones, a firearm, home entertainment equipment and many other items, a full list of which is provided in the list of documents,” stated Hamasaka.
He explained that after the search, he was then detained at Woodlands police station in a very filthy and inhabitable cell for about two days, firstly on a charge of defamation of the President and later on a charge of seditious practices.
Hamasaka stated that he was later released from police custody on police bond but arraigned before the magistrates’ court on a charge of being in possession of obscene materials for which after standing trial, he was acquitted on August 11, 2015.
Prior to his arrest, Hamasaka stated that he was employed as a lecturer and head of media studies at Evelyn Hone College, during which period he was also the station manager for Home FM broadcasting station and ran private businesses in his free time which includes farming and media consultancy.
He noted that his arrest and subsequent prosecution for the initial charges of drug dealing, defamation of the president and seditious practices were widely publicised in print and electronic media both locally and internationally leading to the Plaintiff’s dismissal from his employment and all his clients and business associates began to shun and isolate him thereby causing him total loss of business.
He is therefore claiming damages for malicious and wrongful prosecution, damages for false imprisonment and wrongful prosecution and damages for false imprisonment, pain and suffering.
He is further seeking compensation for lost personal items, interest, costs and any other relief the court may deem fit.