MULENGA MUSONDA writes
DESPITE pleading with the court that it was hunger that had driven him to steal a cow, the magistrate sent a 23-year-old Choma youth to prison where he will spend the next five years doing hard labour for the State.
Kalangisha, a peasant farmer, was convicted of stock theftby the Choma Magistrates Court.
Particulars of the offence were that Kalangisha on February 6, 2020 stole one ox valued at K4,000 the property of Jossy Haansyambi.
When he appeared for plea before magistrate Muyambango Munukayumbwa, Kalangisha readily admitted to the charge without wasting the court’s time.
Court: Did you steal the animal?
Kalangisha: I stole it and it has been taken back.
Court: Did the owner allow you?
Kalangisha: No.
Court: Did you have any claim of right?
Kalangisha: No.
Court: What did you intend to do with it?
Kalangisha: I wanted to sell it so that I could buy food. It was hunger that led me to steal as I had stayed for four days without eating.
According to the statement of facts read by public prosecutor Coillard Sikwalulwa, the stolen animal was recovered at Batoka Abattoir where Kalangisha had sold it.
In mitigation, a crest-fallen Kalangisha pleaded for leniency saying he was married with four children and that he looked after his mother.
Magistrate Munukayumbwa then sentenced him to the minimum mandatory sentence which is five years imprisonment.

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