The Mangochi Senior Resident Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday convicted and sentenced John M’madi Raja, 54, for robbing at Mpondas Total Filling Station using an offensive weapon.
The court through Mangochi Police Station Prosecution Officer lnspector Amos Mwase heard that, on the wee hours of June 14, 2022, the convict broke into Mpondasi Total Filling Station, dragged all fuel attendants and locked them in one room and fled away with CCTV camera saver, K60,000 cash, two cellphones, 10 bottles of five litres of oil, 5 jerricans (20 litres each) of fuel and assorted groceries, all items worthy K558,400.
State prosecutor Inspector Mwase added that the convict was armed with a pistol and also tied up the guards before executing the operation.
He said the matter was reported at Mangochi Police Station, who in turn initiated investigations and the detectives arrested the convict in one of the Rest houses in Balaka following a tip from members of the public. The detectives also recovered a pistol and black head mask in the room.
Appearing before court, Raja pleaded not guilty to both charges prompting the state to parade five witnesses who proved the case beyond reasonable doubt.
In mitigation, the convict asked for court’s leniency, stating that he is a breadwinner to his family who will suffer if sent to prison.
Raja hails from Kalembo Village in Traditional Authority Kalembo in Balaka District.
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