By Innocent Mvundula

The Zomba Senior Resident Magistrate court has sentenced a 22-year-old man to 18 months imprisonment with hard labour for abducting a 7-year-old boy.

Zomba Police Deputy Public Relations Officer Sergeant Patrick Maseko has identified the convict as Amos Mtipa.

The court heard from Inspector Rodney Botomani a Prosecutor at Zomba Police Station, that on May 29, 2020 the convict met the victim at 6 Miles bus depot and offered him a ride as they were going the same direction.

He then took the victim to an unknown destination.

Upon seeing that her son was not coming back home, the mother of the victim reported the matter to Zomba Police Station who launched investigations.

On May 31, 2020, the victim’s mother received a message that her son was found at Nselema in Machinga district together with the convict who by then was in the hands of the police at Nselema.

Mtipa was later taken to Zomba Police where he was charged with the offence of abduction contrary to section 135 of the Penal code.

Appearing in court, Amos pleaded guilty to the charge levelled against him.

In submission, the State Prosecutor Botomani told the court that, the offence which the convict committed is serious in nature and its maximum sentence is 7 years imprisonment.

Botomani then said even though Mtipa is a first offender, he deserved a stiffer sentence to deter would be offenders. He further said the court has a duty to protect children and asked for a custodial sentence.

In mitigation, the convict asked the court not to give him a stiffer sentence.

When passing sentence, Senior Resident Magistrate Rodrick Michongwe concurred with the state that the court has a duty to protect children.  He then sentenced him to 18 months imprisonment with hard labour.

Amos comes from M’bwana village, Traditional Authority Chikowi in Zomba district.

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