Man slapped with three years jail sentence for stealing MK360, 000 from National Bank ATM Machine

Zomba Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday convicted and sentenced Francis Matchado, 36, to serve three years imprisonment with hard labour (IHL) for the offence of theft.

The offence of theft contravenes section 278 of the penal code and attracts a maximum punishment of 14 years IHL when one is found liable and convicted of the offence.

Police prosecuting witness, Sergeant Haswel Chimtali told the court that between April 03 and April 04 this year, the accused person used Mrs. Margret Saizi’s ATM card to steal money amounting to K360, 000.00 from National Bank, Zomba Branch.

The court heard that Matchado stole money when Mrs. Saizi sent her child to withdraw money at National Bank ATM machine.

“Your worship, having trouble to operate the ATM to do the encashment, the child asked Matchado to help her collect the money from the machine,” Chimtali testified.

He added that after assisting the young girl, the accused gave the unsuspecting child another card different to what she brought from her mother.

It was further learnt in court that Matchado kept the PIN number and used the card of Mrs. Saizi to withdraw K360, 000 from the account.

Chimtali told the court that the police arrested the suspect after investigations and was brought before the Zomba Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court where he pleaded guilty and admitted to the offence.

Passing judgment, Senior Resident Magistrate, Paul Chiotcha said Matchado committed a serious offence which deserves a custodial sentence and gave him three years IHL from the date of his arrest.

Chiotcha observed that the crime the convict committed was serious in nature, hence the need for the court to mete out a custodial sentence to restore confidence in the community of their safety and deter others from committing similar offences.

Matchado hails from Ntchema Village, Traditional Authority Chitera in Chirazulu.


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