Court convicts Malawi Police officer for pocketing K94,500 bribe

Dedza Magistrates Court has convicted and sentenced to 39 months imprisonment with hard labour (IHL) police officer, Steven Lipenga for soliciting bribes amounting to K96, 000 from eight people who were arrested for allegedly stealing cattle.

Officer Lipenga, stationed at Chafumbwa police unit in the district, is said to have committed the offence in 2010 before was arrested by the Anticorruption Bureau (ACB) following investigation which revealed that the officer had solicited K96, 000 but only received K94, 500.00 from relatives of the eight suspects in order to release them on police bail.

Lipenga was duly charged by the Magistrates Court with four counts of Corrupt Practices by Public Officer and two counts of Abuse of Office contrary to Section 24(1) and 25B(1) of the Corrupt Practices Act.justice

And on Friday, after almost three years of trial, the Magistrates Court finally convicted Lipenga before sentencing him to prison 24 months for pocketing K94, 500, and 15 months for abuse of authority. The sentences will run concurrently.

The prosecution has since moved the court to make an order under Section 37(b) of the Corrupt Practices Act that the accused person pays back the money he obtained from relatives of the eight suspects.

If Lipenga cannot pay back the money, the State may have to enforce Section 38 of the Corrupt Practices Act, which provides for the recovery of money by way of distress and sale of such moveable and immoveable property of the convict.

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