Man gets 42 months in jail for being found with firearm in Vwaza Marsh

Court

A man aged 51 has been sentenced to three and a half years in prison for being found with a firearm at Vwaza Marsh Game Reserve in Rumphi.

The convict has been identified as Julius Zgambo. He was found with muzzle loader inside Vwaza Marsh Game reserve on February 27, 2021.

On the material day, a team of Wildlife assistants at the said Game Reserve were on patrol duties. They saw footprints and followed up until they arrested Zgambo and seized a Muzzle loader.

He was taken to Rumphi police where he was charged with three counts of entering into a protected area without permit contravening section 32(i), conveying a weapon into a protected area without permit contravening section 33 (1) and hunting into a protected area without permit contravening section 35 (a) of National Parks and Wildlife Act.

Appearing before First Grade Magistrate Cuthbert Phiri on Tuesday this week, Zgambo pleaded guilty of the charges leveled against him.

In submission, Parks and Wildlife prosecutor, John Mabethi, described the accused’s conduct as sluggish as he was previously convicted over similar offences.

Mabethi therefore pleaded for a stiffer punishment to him saying others should also learn a lesson.

Giving sentence, magistrate Phiri agreed with the state saying Zgambo interfered with security of endangered species.

He therefore sentenced Zgambo to 24 months, 48 months and 24 months Imprisonment with Hard Labour (IHL) for the first, second and third counts respectively, saying this should also be a lesson to others. Sentences to run concurrently.

Julius Zgambo comes from Kaluvuvu village under Inkosi Mpherembe in Mzimba district.

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