Two people who in 2013 attempted to sell a three-member family at K150 million (US$318 471) in Mzimba north of Malawi, have been sentenced to seven years imprisonment with hard labour (IHL).
The two—Levison Manota, 23, of Suzumire Village, Traditional Authority (T/A) Kachere in Dedza and Pearson Dzimbiri, 42, of Namiwa Village, T/A Chimaliro in Thyolo— were handed the seven-year sentence by the Mzuzu Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court yesterday.
Northern Region Police spokesperson Maurice Chapola said yesterday the two planned to trade in human parts as a way of making quick money, a development that tempted Dzimbiri to trick the family of Kantandi that if they went to Enukweni in Mzimba they would prosper through a booming bricks business.
However, when they got to Enukweni, the two convicts started looking for markets to sell Kantandi’s family.
One of the people they approached for the human parts deal reported the matter to police. Detectives then disguised themselves as potential buyers to arrest the two.
Said Chapola: “Police detectives from Mzuzu posed as potential buyers and they started negotiating with the convicts on the price of the three individuals who were offered at K150 million. They negotiated to buy them at K120 million (US$ before the officers revealed themselves as police officers and arrested the convicts.”
The two were charged with kidnapping and abduction with intent to murder contrary to Section 261 of the Penal Code.
The offence attracts a maximum sentence of 10 years IHL, but they denied the charge during hearing. The State paraded seven witnesses who testified against them.
In mitigation, the convicts asked for the court’s leniency, saying they were first offenders, but the State pleaded for stiffer sentences to reform the two and also bar others from committing such offences.
Magistrate Austin Banda concurred with the State that cases of human parts trade are gradually increasing and there is need to curb them. He went ahead to give the seven-year sentence.