Mangochi Senior Resident Magistrate's Court has convicted and sentenced Kassam Omar, 31 and his accomplice, Muhammad Allie, 28 to nine years Imprisonment with Hard Labour (IHL) each for being found guilty of damaging a motor vehicle and for attempting to rob two Rwandese.
Police prosecutor, Inspector, Amos Mwase told the court that on May 10, 2022, the victims, a mother and son of Rwandese nationality were driving home in a Mazda Bongo after closing their shop in the evening.
He added that as the two approached their house, they saw an unregistered dark blue VW motor vehicle parked near their gate, adding that upon arriving at the gate Omar and Allie who were armed with Panga knives came out of the VW and charged at the two and demanded cash.
It was learnt that the offenders smashed the Rwandese's vehicle and hacked the son on the right arm sustaining a deep cut and broken bone in the process.
Mwase said the two then pulled the mother from the vehicle and sprayed hot pepper into her eyes before fleeing the place.
"They sped off from the scene after the victim screamed for help," he told the court, adding that the matter was reported to Mangochi Police Station where they carried out investigations which led to the arrest of the two in the early hours of June 9, 2022 near a forex bureau within Mangochi Town after a similar mission foiled at an Asian owned shop.
“The two were arrested while in possession of two sharp panga knives, black head masks, three pairs of pliers, metal bars apart from other tools believed to be breaking equipments hidden in their unregistered dark blue VW,” he said.
The Prosecutor told the court that the Police had conducted an identification parade which enabled the two victims to identify Omar and Allie.
Appearing before Senior Resident Magistrate, Rodrick Michongwe, the two pleaded not guilty and denied the charges which prompted the state to bring in four witnesses who testified against them beyond reasonable doubt.
In mitigation, Omar and Allie asked for court's leniency stating that they have families to look after.
In submission, Mwase told the court that the two were habitual criminals and have been committing a series of robberies targeting foreign and local business people in Mangochi.
He added that the recent crime was a well organized scheme and asked the court to grant the two a custodial and stiffer penalty that should serve as hard lesson.
Passing sentence, Michongwe condemned what Omar and Allie did, saying they indeed deserved a custodial sentence.
He sentenced each one of them to nine years for attempted robbery and six months imprisonment for malicious damage to the vehicle.
Omar comes from M'baluku Village in Traditional Authority (TA) Chowe in Mangochi while Allie comes from Mwanyama Village in TA Mponda in Mangochi.