19 Years IHL for Defilement
A Mangochi Senior Resident Magistrate's court on Monday convicted and sentenced a 37-year-old man to 19 years Imprisonment with Hard Labor (IHL) for defiling his 8-year-old stepdaughter.
The convict, Patrick Joseph, who is a farmer, married the victim's mother over three years ago, according to Mangochi Police Station prosecutor, Sub inspector Skeva Munyapa.
However, Munyapa told the court that within the last month of March 2021, the convict visited a witch doctor to seek traditional medical attention in order to boost his agricultural business, where he was ordered to sleep with a virgin for the rituals.
“Now, during the morning of March 20, 2021, Joseph obeyed the instructions by defiling his step daughter in the house before following his wife to the garden to plant sweet potato stems,” explained Munyapa to the court.
But according to him, the incident was revealed the same day afternoon, as the victim's mother was surprised to see her daughter having difficulties in walking while coming back from school.
“After being quizzed, the victim narrated the ordeal and the matter was reported at Chilipa Police Unit where she was issued with a medical report form and the results from Chilipa Health Centre showed that the victim was defiled,” said Munyapa.
Appearing in court, the accused pleaded guilty to the charge and in mitigation, he asked for the court's leniency, saying he is a first offender and apologized.
Prosecutor Munyapa, instead prayed for a stiffer sentence, saying such cases are on the increase and as a parent, the convict was supposed to protect the girl.
Passing judgement, Senior Resident Magistrate Joshua Nkhono, slapped him with a 19-year jail term.
Patrick Joseph hails from Chipote Village, in the area of Sub Traditional Authority Kachenga in Balaka district.