Hippo killers gets 12 years each


Liwonde First Grade Magistrate court on Monday sentenced three men to 12 years in jail each for killing a hippo.

The three are Daudi Asima, 34, Lewis Kaliati Asibu, 27, and Jackson Lanjesi aged 28.

State prosecutor Ezekiel Kalunga of Liwonde Police told the court that on December 16, 2017, park assistants were on patrol within Liwonde National Park when they came across a hippo lying dead with part of its meat removed.

The parks assistants noted that the animal was killed by poachers using spears. Three spears were later found within the park.

Investigations led to the arrest of the three suspects who were found with hippo meat.

The hippo killers were charged four counts: illegal entry into protected area, conveying weapons into protected area, killing protected species and possessing game meat.

When taken before court, the three denied the charges and this made Kalunga to call in four witnesses.

After they were found guilty, prosecutor Kalunga further asked the court to impose stiff punishments to the convicts for this was organised crime.

First Grade Magistrate Jones Masula sentenced each of the convicts to 6 years for first count, 4 years for second, and 8 years for third. He ruled that these sentences will run concurrently.

Masula also sentenced each of the hippo killers to 4 years in jail for fourth and said the sentence will run consecutively with the others.

This means that each hippo killer will spend 12 years in jail.