The Mchinji Second Grade Magistrate has sentenced a 63 year-old man to three years in jail for setting fire to a house belonging a 71 year-old man where assorted items worth K331,000 got burnt.
The convict has been identified as Godfrey Kampini while the victim is Kapuntha Longwe.
The State through Prosecutor Bertha Ngoma told the court that during the night of November 30, 2016 Longwe was fast asleep in his house only to get awakened by a fierce fire. He tried with the help from his wife to put out the fire but their efforts yielded nothing.
The matter was reported to Chimwankango Police Unit where investigations were instituted which led to the arrest of the Kampini.
When brought before court, Kampini pleaded guilty to the charge of arson.
Prosecutor Ngoma asked the court to slap the convict with stiffer punishment as the act shown by the convict was barbaric and posed a threat to the lives of the occupants.
In mitigation, the convict told the court to consider giving him a lenient sentence as he has two children who require his care and support. He also claimed that he committed the offence out of anger after noticing that the victim had a hand in his broken marriage.
The victim is uncle to the accused’s ex-wife and the offender believed that the complainant facilitated the breakdown of his marriage and arranged another marriage for the woman, hence the provocation.
When passing the sentence, Second Grade Magistrate Chipanthenga pointed out that the offence committed by the convict is serious in nature and carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.
However, the magistrate said that the convict deserved a reasonable custodial sentence due to his old age. He went further to say that by pleading guilty, the convict did not give the state some hurdles and also saved court’s precious time. He then sentenced the convict to a three year jail term.
Godfrey Kampini hails from Muwato village, Traditional Authority Njolomole in Ntcheu district.