By Wezzie Gausi:
The High Court sitting in Mchinji District yesterday sentenced three people to death for murdering a person with albinism in August 2015.
According to Judge Esmie Chombo, the three were found guilty of the gruesome murder in which they chopped off hands and legs of the victim.
The three—Douglas Mwale, Sophie Jere and Fontino Folosani —murdered Priscott Pepuzani in a bush using a metal bar and hoe handle and buried his body in a garden.
“After the court heard from both parties involved, it has been proven beyond reasonable doubt that the three people really murdered the person with albinism.
“It is a sad thing that this country is no longer a safe place for people with albinism to live in. This malpractice must end and the court is here to stand up with people with albinism,” Chombo said.
She condemned what she called the “evil” act of killing fellow humans for rituals.
She said the death sentences had been meted out in order to send a strong message to would-be offenders but also to put to a stop such malpractices.
The three were charged with four counts of murder, conspiracy to harm a person with disability, selling body tissues and possession of human tissues.
After cross-examination and submission by State and defense lawyers before conviction, the court convicted three out of four accused persons.
It acquitted the fourth accused person Alick Kambani due to lack of substantive evidence on his involvement.
The court heard that the fourth accused was in Zambia when the incident happened.
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