THREE Police officers have been sentenced to two years imprisonment each with hard labour for trying to extort K10,000 from a liquor trader after posing as Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) officers.
This is in a matter in which Felix Kafula, Simon Mulenga and Conrad Bwalya are charged with attempting to extort by threats.
When the matter came up for judgement before High Court Judge Chalwe Mchenga, the trio were found guilty of the offence and sentenced to two years imprisonment each with hard labour.
In mitigation, the three police officers said through their lawyer that they are married and bread-winners of their families taking care of between five and eight children each with other dependants.
They said they are first offenders and have served Government and the nation as police officers, adding that in their years of service, they have not been convicted or charged with any offence.
They added that because of their hard work, the trio were due for promotion and asked the court to exercise maximum leniency as they are remorseful and that the court should consider any other punishment but not a custodial one.
Justice Mchenga said he heard the mitigation that the convicts were first offenders but that the police officers were among the few irresponsible officers tarnishing the image of the entire service.
He said the trio went out to look for law-breakers and not to enforce the law but to make money on the side for themselves.
On November 23, 2011 in Lusaka, the three attempted to extort K10,000 from Mary Nambita by accusing or threatening to accuse her of illegally importing assorted liquor beverages.
The three police officers impounded a bus containing liquor and demanded K10,000 from the owner of the beverages because she allegedly did not have proper import documents.
The three officers introduced themselves as ZRA officers.
Zambia Daily Mail