A First Grade Magistrate’s Court in Malawi’s lakeshore district of Mangochi has convicted and sentenced three men to two years imprisonment with hard labour after finding them guilty of indecent assault.
The offence of indecent assault contravenes section 137 (1) of the penal code and attracts a maximum punishment of 14 years imprisonment with hard labour.
The court heard through police prosecution witness, Inspector Efford Kamphonje that the three accomplices committed the offence on March 21 this year at Chilimba Village in the area of Chief Nankumba in the district.
Kamphonje told the court that the three suspects found an 18 year old girl (name withheld) with her boy friend sharing some romantic moments in a wetland vegetable garden in the same village.
“The three pounced on the two love birds. The boy managed to escape from the beating whilst the girl was grabbed and stripped naked before spilling some soil in her private parts,” Kamphonje told the court.
He said the matter was reported to Monkey-Bay Police Post which launched a search for the suspects leading to their arrest on March 26 this year.
They all pleaded guilty and admitted to the charge of indecent assault of which the court convicted them on their own plea of guilt.
In mitigation, the three pleaded with the court to exercise clemency when arriving at its determination on the basis that they have some family obligations which would require their physical presence in their respective homes.
However, before passing sentence, First Grade Magistrate, Jack Njikho observed that the accused deserved a custodial sentence because the conduct was demeaning and traumatizing at the same time.
“The court weighed all the mitigating factors but considering the way the crime was committed, it has decided to mete out a custodial sentence to stop the malpractice on one hand and to act as a deterrent to other would-be offenders,” Njikho noted.
He therefore sentenced each of the three to serve a 24 months imprisonment with hard labour punishment.
The trio convicts, Leornard Michael, 24, Chinawa Robert, 29 and John Mazinjiri, 26 come from Chilimba Village in the area of Traditional Authority Nankumba in Mangochi.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :