THE Serenje Magistrate’s Court has fined a Zambian K30,000 while two Tanzanian nationals have each been fined K15,000 for unlawfully trading in the mukula tree.
The three – Reagan Chama, 33, of house number 236 Kakola township in Lusaka, Shaban Amir, 46, Suban house number 90, Kiwalan, Tanzania, and Baraka Aaron Fumbo, 24, house number 90, Mbeya, Tanzania – recently appeared before Serenje magistrate Fidelis Ngosa.
Chama, Suban and Fumbo were arrested on August 30 this year in Serenje for unlawfully trading and possessing biological resources contrary to Section 120(a) (b) of the Environment Management Act number 12 of 2011 of the Laws of Zambia.
In count one, the trio jointly and whilst acting together traded and possessed mukula tree without a licence.
In count two, Chama was allegedly involved in money laundering contrary to Section Seven of the Money Laundering Act number 17 of 2001 as amended by Act number 44 of 2010 of the Laws of Zambia.
Information before the court was that on August 30 this year, Chama engaged in acts of money laundering by acquiring property, namely a Toyota Land cruiser Prado registration number AIR 2004 and K79,000 cash.
In count three, Chama is alleged to have been in possession of property suspected to have been proceedings of crime contrary to Section 71(1) of the Forfeiture of Proceeding of Crime Act number 19 of 2010 of the Laws of Zambia.
In this count, Chama on August 30 allegedly received, possessed, concealed or brought into Zambia a Toyota Land Cruiser Prado registration number AIR 2004 and K79,000 cash, property reasonably suspected to be proceeds of crime.
Chama and his co-accused pleaded guilty to count one and were convicted as charged.
In counts two and three, Chama pleaded not guilty and trial has started.
Facts before the court were that on August 30, the security joint operations committee received information from Nywanda area in Serenje that there was a group of people trading and possessing biological resources, namely the mukula tree.
The law enforcement officers impounded the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado registration number AIR 2004 and a containerised Tanzanian truck and trailer registration number AAR 2004 and the horse registration T949 AGA.
The logs of mukula tree and the truck and trailer have been forfeited to the state.
Zambia Daily Mail