Siavonga charcoal burner goes in for a year for drug trafficking
Siavonga , May 28 th ,2013, ZANIS — The Siavonga magistrates’ court yesterday sentenced a 60 year old man to 12 months imprisonment with hard labour for being in possession of psychotropic substances.
Siavonga magistrate, Bathromeo Kaongo slapped the 12 months sentence on JarichoTshabatali a Charcoal burner who stood charged with one count of trafficking in psychotropic substance contrary to section 6 cap 96 of the laws of Zambia.
The court however suspended the twelve months imprisonment with hard labour to eighteen months on condition that the offender does not indulge himself in any psychotropic substance related offences.
Particulars of the offence alleged that Mr. Tshabatali a Chiawa based man in Kafue district on 10th May, 2013 in Chiawa did traffic psychotropic substance namely marijuana without authority.
The court heard that the Drug Enforcement Commission Officers while on duty received a tip off from reliable source that there was a man in Chiawa who was dealing with marijuana in the area.
The information received forced a team of Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) officers to go and look for a man at his house, fortunately the officers found the old man and introduced themselves and latter Tshabatali voluntarily surrendered two bolls from his trousers pocket to the officers.
The court heard that later the officers searched his house but nothing was found.
He was then apprehended and taken to the police where he was interviewed under warn and caution statement and gave a free and voluntary reply admitting the charge.
Mr.Tshabatali admitted the charge saying he was found with marijuana because he used it for smoking.
The court further recorded that the Public Analysts confirmed the marijuana which weighed 4 gramme at U.T.H Food and Drugs Laboratory in Lusaka.
In mitigation, Tshabatali pleaded for courts lenience saying he was marriage with seven school going children and that if jailed his family would suffer.
However, the magistrate said the offence committed was a serious one which carries maximum sentence of up to 25 years adding that the nature of the offence committed was on the increase in the area.
He observed that considering the age of the convict and the quantity of the substance found in possession, he decided to give him a second chance.