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Court convicts tobacco vendor

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By Bethsaida Msukwa:

Tobacco Commission (TC) has hailed the Judiciary for apparently promoting the Tobacco Industry Act after a court in Mzimba found a farmer guilty of selling tobacco in the district in contravention of Section 47 of the Act.

The First-Grade Magistrate Court in Mpherembe in the Northern Region district had heard that Boyima Jere had sold 70 kilogrammes of tobacco to a police officer even though he did not have a licence.

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State Prosecutor Robert Chawinga said the case of the police officer Gift Tembo has been transferred to Mzimba Police Station.

Speaking after the court proceedings, TC Division Manager for the Northern Region, Richard Chinthunzi, said he was impressed with the judgment.

“We are happy with the judgment so far and we have been told that the accused has now been convicted after being found selling tobacco to another contractor even though he is contracted by Limbe Leaf as a buying company,” Chinthunzi said.

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Section 47 of the Tobacco Industry Act stipulates that any buyer or a person who buys or sells tobacco under contract farming without a contract agreement registered by TC commits an offence.

In the case of Jere, the court has ordered that the tobacco should be confiscated by TC for grading and selling after which 20 percent realised from the sale will meet the fine of the convict.

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