Sexual related offences on upswing

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High Court Presiding Judge Gertrude Chawatama has bemoaned the high number of sexual related cases that were recorded in the year 2014.


Judge Chawatama said defilement cases were the most common among sexual offences.


She said victims of these offences were ranging from six months old to 15 years.


Judge Chawatama said this in Lusaka today during the opening of the Lusaka High Court criminal sessions.


She added that current statistics have not shown any signs of reduction in sexual related cases despite massive sensitisations.


She noted that in order to curb the vice, there was need for more research on why such cases were on the increase in the country.


Judge Chawatama said it was disheartening that despite many of the offenders receiving harsh punishment of not less than fifteen years imprisonment, cases of defilement were rising.


Meanwhile, Judge Chawatama has said challenges of transport to ferry prisoners to court has also continued to haunt the judiciary.


She said this has made it difficult for the courts to dispose off cases on time hence resulted in more backlogs of cases.


And speaking at the same function, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Mutembo Nchito bemoaned the lack of a forensic and pathologic laboratory to help the court with investigations.


Mr. Nchito said this has slowed down the justice system which was also coupled with low number of legal aid counsels.