A South African cocaine dealer who the court fined MK700, 000 or serve five years in jail after being found guilty of illegal importation of dangerous drug has asked the court to help him liaise with his family and relations in South Africa to raise the demanded sum.
The South African, Siyabonga Kom, 28, was intercepted and arrested at Kamuzu International Airport last week with cocaine weighing 4.2kg which he concealed at the base of his travelling bag.
Nyasa Times understands that Kom had travelled from Sao Paulo International Airport in Brazil to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, connected to KIA, Malawi on Ethiopian Airways.
He appeared before the Mkukula Magistrate Court in Dowa where he pleaded guilty.
In mitigation he asked the court to be lenient considering that he does not have any relation in the country.
First Grade Magistrate Cecilia Onsewa slapped Kom with the MK700, 000 fine saying he deserved a stiff punishment to deter other would-be-offenders.
“We want to send a message to the public and the world at large that we will never allow Malawi to be used as ground for drugs exportation or importation and any related criminal acts,” said the Magistrate.
KIA Police Public Relations Officer Sapulain Chitonde has said that the sentencing, the cocaine was burned in public including Kom witnessed the burning.