A 60-year-old Balaka man will spend the next seven years in prison after the Balaka First Grade Magistrate Court found him guilty of defiling and in the process impregnating his 13-year-old grand-daughter.

The girl has since given birth to a baby boy.

Balaka police spokesperson Joseph Sauka on Wednesday said the man was jailed on Tuesday.

“Police Prosecutor Constable Christopher Nyirongo told the court that the suspect (name withheld), 60, had been defiling his grand-daughter, who was in Standard 6, since January this year and impregnated her,” Sauka said.

He said Nyirongo told the court that the suspect, who kept defil¬ing the girl until July, was threat¬ening the victim not to reveal his mischief until some elders suspected her of being pregnant.

“After taking her to the hospital for check up, it was proved that the little girl was indeed pregnant and she mentioned her grand¬father as responsible for the pregnancy. After this the suspect escaped and returned home after hearing that the girl had given birth to a baby boy, thinking he no longer had a case to answer. He, however, ended up into the hands of community policing members who took him to Police,” Sauka said.

He said the suspect pleaded guilty to the offence and, in mitigation, he asked the court to forgive him because his conviction will make both the victim and the child suf¬fer because he is a bread winner and that he regrets what he did to his grand-daughter.

Sauka said the state quashed his mitigating factors, saying these cases are becoming common in the country hence the need for the suspect to be given a stiff sentence so that it should be a lesson to him and other would-be offenders.

He said First Grade Magistrate Damson Banda concurred with the state that these cases are becoming common in the country hence the need for the courts to give offenders stiff sentences.

Banda therefore sentenced the man to seven years imprisonment with hard labour. The convict comes from Chanthunya village, Sub Traditional Authority Chanthunya in Balaka.

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