The Dowa First Grade Magistrate’s Court has convicted and sentenced twelve people to pay fines of K7000.00 and K50 000.00 each or in default serve one month and two months imprisonment with hard labour respectively for contravening Covid-19 rules and regulations.

The court through state prosecutor Sergeant Joseph Banda heard that the convicts were arrested on the night of February 25, 2021 at Dowa Turn Off and Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa District.

The court further heard that the convicts were arrested when police officers were on Covid-19 patrol whereby eight were arrested people were arrested for not putting on face masks while four others were arrested for operating business outside permitted hours.

Appearing before court, the convicts pleaded guilty to charges of contravening Covid-19 rules and regulations.

In his submission, state prosecutor Sergeant Joseph Banda asked the court to mete out a stiff punishment to the offenders as one of deterring others from committing the offences.

Passing sentence, First Grade Magistrate Amran Phiri concurred with the state’s submission for a stiff punishment hence sentenced eight people to pay fines of K7000.00 each or in default serve one month IHL for not putting on face masks and four people have been ordered to pay fines of K50 000.00 each or in default serve two months IHL for operating business outside permitted hours.

The convicts have since paid the fines.

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