Mangochi Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court on Monday sentenced a 37-year-old man to 19 years in prison for raping his 8-year-old stepdaughter as a ritual to boost his business.
Mangochi Police Station deputy spokesperson Sub Inspector Amina Tepani Daudi has identified the convict as Patrick Joseph.
During court proceedings, Mangochi Police prosecutor Sub lnspector Skeva Munyapa told the court that Joseph, a tobacco farmer, married the victim’s mother when the child was 5 years old.
During the month of March 2021, the convict visited a witch doctor to seek traditional rituals in order to boost his agricultural business and he was ordered to sleep with a virgin for the rituals.
Prosecutor Munyapa added that, during the morning of March 20, 2021, Joseph raped the child.
On the same day in the afternoon, the victim’s mother was astonished to see her daughter having difficulties in walking while coming back from school.
After being quizzed, the victim narrated the ordeal.
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.
Appearing in court, the accused pleaded guilty to the charge.
In mitigation, Joseph asked for the court’s leniency, saying that he is a first offender and apologized, but prosecutor Munyapa prayed for a stiff sentence, saying defilement put girls’ lives under threats.
Passing judgement, Senior Resident Magistrate Joshua Nkhono slapped him with 19-year jail term to deter other would be offenders.
Joseph hails from Chipote Village, Sub Traditional Authority Kachenga in Balaka.