The Phalombe First Grade Magistrate Court has slapped a 26 year-old man with a 14 year jail term for armed robbery and acts intending to cause grievous harm contrary to Sections 301 and 235 of the Penal Code, respectively.
The convict, Jonathan Makuluni, who hails from Traditional Authority (T/A) Nsamala’s area in Balaka and based at Kachere Township in Blantyre, was found guilty on all counts.
The Court gave him a 14 year imprisonment with hard labour for each charge and he will serve concurrently.
Before the judgment, the court heard that on March 13 2015, the convict together with his friends attacked the premises of a businessman Willie Muheya at Holy Family Trading Centre in Phalombe where they stole money amounting to K650, 000 after hacking his watchman with panga knives.
The money was being kept in a warehouse where the watchman Justine Chidule was guarding.
As Police were investigating the matter, law enforcers bumped into the convict together with his two accomplices around Nalingula village, a stone a way from Phalombe Boma and they gave the officers wrong information that they were going to a funeral in the said village yet there was no funeral.
“Police became suspicious and as they wanted to arrest the three, they started running away. However, Police struggled with the accused who was arrested later but had bitten one Detective Constable Joseph Yolamu such that he sustained a permanent disfigurement in the right ear,” told the court Police prosecutor Sergeant, Philemon Banda.
Makuluni was subsequently found with a laptop bag containing two sharpened panga knives and failed to explain the intended purpose of the knives.
Makuluni pleaded not guilty to both charges but the court found him guilty on all counts.
Sergeant Philemon Banda also told the court that in the recent past Phalombe has become a place where criminals from Blantyre are targeting such that the business community and the entire citizenry are living in fear for their had earned resources/property.
He then asked the court to give stiffer punishment to the Makuluni to deter other people with similar motives.
And the Magistrate went on to slap him with two 14 year-old jail terms, which will run concurrently.