Seven jailed 5 years for possession of pongolins

Five Mozambican nationals and three Zambians have been convicted to 5 years imprisonment with hard labour by Chadiza Magistrate Court for being found in possession of protected animals.

In the first case, a team of officers from the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Services on December 13, 2016 arrested and charged Alesandro Domingos, Alberto Paulo, Alborno Lysorne and Lazarus Phiri of Chagunda village in Chadiza for being in possession of a live pangolin.

The operation was conducted after a tip off from members of the public.

Facts before the court were that Domingos, Paulo, Lysorne and Phiri jointly and whilst acting together possessed a live pangolin contrary to the laws of Zambia.

The four admitted the charge.

In mitigation the four asked the court for leniency as they did not know that it is a case to be found with the animal.

But passing judgement, Magistrate Fred Musaka said that the offence committed was a serious one, as the quartet were not allowed to be in possession of a protected animal.

He said that to deter them and others from committing a similar offence, he was sentencing the four to five years imprisonment each, effective from the day of arrest.

And in a second case, Two Mozambican nationals and a Zambian were also convicted to five years imprisonment each with hard labour for a similar offence.

Facts before court are that Peter Masemino, Foloman Tomesh and Alick Mbewe on December 21st 2016 in Chadiza, jointly and whilst acting together possessed a live pangolin contrary to the laws of Zambia.

The trio admitted the charge and were convicted accordingly.

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