31-year old Geofrey Jawadu has been sent to serve a 6 and half year jail term following a ruling by Mangochi second grade magistrate court on Friday January 17, 2019 for an offence of theft by trick.

The court heard through Mangochi Police prosecutor Sub lnspector Regina Makwinja that the accused had been duping monies from people around Mangochi by tricking them that he is a businessman and transports people from Malawi to South Africa.

In the month of July 2018, the accused duped a sum of K250,000 from Matola Sailesi (50) at Nyangu village and ran away after convincing him that he will take his two sons to South Africa.

In the month of August 2018, the accused moved to Pagona village where he married another wife. After staying for few days the accused person ran away with his sister ln-law’s passport Zainab Mussa (23) worthy K48,000 after convincing her that he had a female passenger who wanted to use it since she had no passport.

Makwinja added that, on August 29, 2018 the accused person hired a bicycle taxi(Kabaza) from Chimbende village to Mangochi boma.

On their way the accused told the Kabaza operator that he can take him to South Africa at an affordable price.

The bicycle operator was convinced but since had no money and agreed to meet the next day at his house.

The following day the accused went to the bicycle operator’s house, after discussions the accused took two loudspeakers, amplifier and the bicycle from him as transport fare. All items worthy K150,000.

All complaints were reported to the Police and investigations were initiated immediately.

After being on the run for sometime Jawadu was arrested in Makanjira and the Police also recovered all the items including the passport.

Appearing in court the accused person pleaded not guilty to all the 3 counts laid against him and the state paraded five witnesses who testified against him.

In his submission before sentence Makwinja pleaded with the court to impose a custodial sentence since such cases are on the increase and the accused took advantage of the situation because many people from the district travel to South Africa to seek for greener pastures.

When passing judgement his worship second grade magistrate Augustine Mizaya found him guilty of all the offences.

He therefore sentenced him to 3 years on the first count, 1 and half year on the second count and 2 years imprisonment with hard labour on the third count and sentences to run consecutively.

Geofrey Jawadu hails from village lba in the area of traditional authority Jalasi in Mangochi.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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