Mangochi Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court has sentenced a 50-year-old herbalist Alex Jumbe, to nine years imprisonment with hard labour (IHL) after being found guilty of possessing a live pangolin without license, contrary to Section 86 (1) as read with section 110(b) of the National Parks and Wildlife Act.
The Court learnt through the Eastern Region Police Prosecution Officer, Assistant Superintendent Charles Panyani that Jumbe, a herbalist, was found with a live pangolin on March 15, 2022 at Mwambajira Trading Centre in Mangochi claiming that he uses the scales its scales to make concoctions.
Jumbe pleaded not guilty and denied the charges which prompted the state to parade five witnesses that testified beyond reasonable doubt that the herbalist possessed the live pangolin.
In submission, the state prayed for a stiffer penalty on the basis that cases of such nature were rampant in the district and that Jumbe committed a serious offence.
In Mitigation, Jumbe asked for the court’s leniency, saying he was a bread winner for his family and asked for a non custodial sentence.
Senior Resident Magistrate, Rodrick Michongwe said pangolins are listed as endangered species to prevent them from extinction and as such they need to be protected.
Michongwe sentenced Jumbe to nine years imprisonment with hard labour to act as a deterrent to other would-be offenders.