Machinga man gets 3 years jail sentence for breaking into Catholic Church

The Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court sitting at Nanyumbu,  in Machinga on Friday has convicted and sentenced Mwayionere Legson, 57, to 3 years imprisonment with hard labour for the offence of house breaking and theft contrary to Section 311 of the Penal Code.
When presenting facts in court, Ntaja police based prosecutor Inspector Cliff Kalawa told the court that on the night of 15-16 September 15-16, 2020 the accused broke into St. Michael Catholic church and went away with 2 cassocks, 3 wrappers used to cover coffins, 2 plates used for offering and the Holy Bible.
According to Machinga police deputy public relations officer,  Ngwashame Msume, this came to light when one of the church members, Jobson Gabriel, went to the church for morning devotions and discovered that the church was broken into by unknown criminals. After checking thoroughly inside the church, he noticed that some items were missing.
“After two days, the accused was found offering for sale the stolen plates at a certain drinking joint. He was apprehended by the community who surrendered him to Mangamba Police Unit,” explained Msume.
Added Msume: “He was convicted by the court on his own plea of guilty to the charge leveled against him, and he also admitted to have sold the gowns to an unknown person.”
In mitigation, he prayed for leniency saying that it was the devil who influenced him to do the malpractice.
The state prayed for stiffer punishment, saying that what the convict did was uncalled for, and considering that cases of breaking and theft in Catholic churches were becoming rampant in the country.
Senior Resident Magistrate Muhammad Chande concurred with the state and sentenced him to 36 months imprisonment with hard labour.
Mwayionere Legson hails from Kapoloma Village, Traditional Authority Kapoloma in Machinga district.

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1 year ago

Very harsh sentence. This is unacceptable.

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