The Blantyre magistrate court has sentenced a 19 year-old man to 18 years imprisonment with hard labour for repeatedly raping a girl aged 12.
The convict, Gift Maunda, is reported to have been sexually abusing the girl from the month of March to May this year.
According to state prosecutor Amos Mwase, the girl used to visit the convict at his house and the rapist found the chance to sexually assault her.
Mwase added that the girl was later noted to be pregnant and she got positive on a pregnancy test at Chilomoni health center.
In mitigation, the convict pleaded for a lenient punishment arguing that he looks after a wife and a child.
However, Mwase argued that Maunda deserves a stiff punishing since his actions showed that he was cruel to the young girl.
In his ruling Senior Magistrate Peter Kandulu sentenced Maunda to serve a jail term of 18 years as a lesson to would be offenders.
Maunda comes from Kamadzi Village, in Dowa district.