Court sentences two men over wildlife crime

The Senior Resident Magistrate Court in Lilongwe has sentenced two men to three years imprisonment each for being found in possession and dealing with pangolin skin.

The two, Douglas Makhala, 47,  and 24-year-old Daniel Chimwanye were arrested by police on August 10, 2020 in Lilongwe after being found selling pangolin skin weighing 2.97 Kilograms without license.

Speaking to YONECO FM, State Prosecutor Trust Banda said he asked the court to consider stiffer punishment for the accused.

“As the State we enlightened the Court to consider the 30 years maximum sentence for the Wildlife Crimes as provided for in the new Wildlife Act,” he said.

Delivering her ruling on Wednesday afternoon, Senior Resident Magistrate Florence Msekandiana said the accused deserve stiffer punishment as one way of sending a strong message to would be offenders.

Msekandiana added that a lot organizations and the government are pumping in a lot of resources in the protection of wildlife.

During the course of the case, the two told the court that they were not aware that the skin is of prohibited species as they found it while dogs were playing with it.

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