by Vinjeru Ngwira
Mzuzu Principal Magistrate’s court on Friday, September 4, 2020, sentenced 22 year – old Vitumbiko Chimaliro and his 28 year – old accomplice Masautso Maliseni to 15 years imprisonment with hard labour (IHL) each for raping a 16 year – old girl in a row.
The two committed the offence in April this year at Lusangazi area In the city.
The court through State prosecutor, sub inspector Martin Bwanali heard that on April 11, 2020 at around 8 pm, the two convicts alongside another man who is still at large, raped the girl in a row when she was coming from Easter prayers at a certain C.C. A.P church with her friends.
The Court further heard that the girl’s friends then rushed home to inform people who followed up and found one of the convicts on top of the girl.
Appearing in court, the two pleaded not guilty to the charge levelled against them prompting the State to parade five witnesses who proved their case beyond reasonable doubt.
In his submission, State prosecutor Martin Bwanali asked the court to give the two a stiff punishment bearing in mind that what the convicts did was well planned as they were armed with a knife.
In mitigation, the two asked the court to exercise leniency saying they are bread winners of their families.
Passing judgement, Principal Resident Magistrate Paul Chiotcha conquered with the State saying the manner in which the two acted is dangerous to the society as such they should be isolated from it. He then sentenced them to 15 years IHL to send the message to the public that the courts are serious in protecting the girl child in the country.
Chimaliro hails from Chimalinga village, T/A Kampingo Sibande in Mzimba district while Maliseni hails from Kujanga village in the area of T/A Kachere in Dedza district.
Public Relations Officer
Mzuzu Police Station