Ntcheu first grade magistrate court on Monday convicted and sentenced a 32 year old woman to five years Imprisonment with Hard Labour for stealing a day old baby at Ntcheu District Hospital.
The court through state prosecutor Francis Malenga, heard that on June 22, 2018, the accused Mariam Derick, stole a newly born baby boy at Ntcheu District Hospital Martenity Ward.
Darick, confesed before First Grade Magistrate Crispin Sachuluka that, her sole purpose of coming to Ntcheu from Blantyre on that day was to steal a baby.
The convict managed to beat the hospital security and stayed for a while at Maternity Waiting Shelter with other women waiting for labour. Dressed like a pregnant woman herself, the accused then proceeded to Maternity ward where she got herself a bed next to the mother who had just delivered the baby boy.
She stole the baby, boarded a minibus to Blantyre and proceeded to Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital where she allocated herself a place among the newly given birth mothers before calling her husband and neighbours at home that she has given birth to a baby boy.
The baby stayed with the family for over a week and they named him Blessings before well wishers, who got the news of the missing baby in Ntcheu on the radio, alerted the village headman in the area who reported the family to Manase Police.
Derick was arrested and charged with child stealing which contravens Section 167 of the Penal Code. She was jointly charged with her husband, Derick Dauson on a Conspiracy to commit a felony charge contrally to Section 404 of the Penal Code.
Meanwhile, the husband is still in police custody waiting to answer the said charge.
The State prosecutor asked for stiffer and custodial sentence, citing the scenario the offence was commited.
In mitigation, the accused prayed for leniency saying that she will never do it again, and that she has two children who will suffer most if she is handed a custodial sentence.
But in his rulling, Ntcheu First Grade Magistrate Crispin Sachulika, quashed the mitigating factors.
He concurred with the state saying that people of Mariam’s caliber do not deserve to be in the community, they are a threat to any society.
Sachuluka continued to say that the fact that Mariam managed to beat hospital systems, it entells that the crime was organised, and could have resulted into the death of the baby.
He then slapped her with five years Imprisonment with Hard Labour so that it serves as a lesson to the other would be offenders.
Mariam Derick hails from Mperekeni village, Traditional Authority Ganya in the district, while Derick Dauson 32, hails from Bamakhutcha village, Traditional Authority Chikumbu in Mulanje.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :