Machinga Third Grade Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday convicted and ordered George Likhonya, 27, to pay a fine of K150,000 for being found in possession of Indian Hemp (Cannabis Sativa) contrary to section 4 (A) as read with Regulation 19 of Dangerous Drugs Act.

Machinga Police Station prosecutor, Sergeant Davie Katandika told the court that on November 25, 2017 police officers from the station conducted a routine sweeping exercise where they arrested the suspect.

“During the exercise the officers were tipped that the accused was selling Cannabis Sativa locally known as Chamba at his house and when a follow up was made the suspect was found with 8.2 kilograms of the illicit drug,” Katandika told the court.

Likhonya who pleaded guilty to the offence in mitigation asked the court to exercise leniency when passing sentence, claiming he is the bread winner looking after several children.

However, Prosecutor Katandika pleaded with the court to impose a stiff punishment to the convict in view of the nature of the offence which poses danger to the youth who indulge in the illicit drug.

“Considering the rate at which most youths are smoking Chamba in the district and the country as a whole, it would be appropriate for the court to hand down a meaningful punishment to protect them from accessing the drug,” Katandika pleaded.

Passing sentence, Machinga Third Grade Magistrate, Austin Kamanga corroborated with the state that peddling of Chamba was rampant and exposes the youth to unruly behaviours.

Kamanga, therefore, fined the convict K150, 000.00 or in default serve two and half years imprisonment with hard labour. Likhonya has since paid the fine.

Likhonya comes from Machinjiri Village in the area of Traditional Authority Malemia in Zomba District.

Source: Mana

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