The Lilongwe Magistrates Court on Monday sentenced 37-year-old Julius Kalenga to 13 months imprisonment with hard labor for attempting to bribe a police officer with K20, 000.
Lilongwe police spokesperson Kingsley Dandaula said on March 21 this year, Kalenga tried to bribe Deputy Director of Prosecution Nepier Chafikana over a motor vehicle theft case the officer was handling.
He said Kalenga left an envelope containing the money at the house of Chafikana, with a note indicating the envelope was from relatives of a suspect in the case he was handling, who was on remand at Maula Prison on that time.
“Upon realizing that this was a bribe, the officer reported the matter to his office. After investigations, the police summoned Kalenga on March 26 and took him to court where he was charged with corruption, contrary to Section 90 (b) of the penal code.
“He initially pleaded not guilty to the charge. But in the course of the trial, he changed his plea after the state had paraded three witnesses,” Dandaula said.
In his mitigation, Kalenga pleaded with the court for a lenient sentence saying he was a first offender and that his plea of guilty had saved the court a lot of time.
State prosecutor Superintendent Gomezgani Mchawi asked the court for a stiff penalty to deter would-be offenders from committing the same crime and that the convict’s action tantamount to denting the image of the Malawi Police Service.
Passing judgment, Senior Resident Magistrate Chisomo Msokera concurred with the state prosecutor and jailed Kalenga for 13 months imprisonment with hard labor.
Kalenga comes from Mpata Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Kalembo in Balaka district