IN THE HIGH COURT OF MALAWI
MISCELLANEOUS CRIMINAL APPLICATION 3 OF 2008
CHALUNDA, JOSEPH NATHANIEL, SAIDI IMPHANI AND BUSHIRI BANDA BUNAYA
HONOURABLE JUSTICE E. B. TWEA
Counsel for the State
of Counsel for the 1st
in person all respondent
S. P. Moyo Official Interpreter
S E N T E N C E
The four convicts appeared before the Principal Resident
Magistrate Blantyre on 5th
July 2007 on a charge containing two counts of robbery contrary to
Section 301 of the Penal Code. They all pleaded not guilty
charges. However, after a full trial the court found them guilty and
convicted them. The court however, declined to proceed
and committed them to the High Court for sentence under Section 14(5)
of this Criminal Procedure and Evidence Code.
From the facts on record the accused persons in the
first count were Joseph Nathaniel, Saidi Imphani and Bushili Banda
On the 21st
April 2007, they held up the Western Union office in down town
Blantyre and robbed it of K1, 000, 000.00. They were armed with
The evidence had it that two of the accused persons made
a preliminary survey of the officers pretending to be bona fide
They came back later with a gun. They held up the
officers and clients. Drove the clients into a toilet and robbed the
The brandishing of the gun was, of course, accompanied by
On the second count which was committed on 24th
May, 2007, the accused persons were Charles Chalunda, Joseph
Nathaniel and Saidi Imphani. The help up Simms Electrics shop in
Central Blantyre business area and robbed it of a laptop computer, a
cellphone and K600, 000 cash. It is on record that the gun
fact discharged in the course of the robbery.
This case comes before me for sentencing. I noted that
Joseph Nathaniel and Saidi Imphani were involved in both robberies.
Banda Buyana was involved on the first count only. Charles
Chalunda was involved on the second count only.
This Court takes into account that all the accused
persons are relatively young people, being below 30 years of age.
Bushili Banda Buyana, who is serving another sentence, the
rest are first offenders. They have been in custody since their
in June 2007. I will take this into account.
Be this as it may, this is a serious offence. The
accused persons were operating a gang to undertake criminal
did surveillance on money handling institutions or
operations. These offences were premeditated. They possessed and
weapons, to wit guns and in fact had the audacity
to discharge the gun during the criminal operations. These are
Further there has been a high prevalence of
such offences in the City of Blantyre.
The lower court would have had in mind the Sentencing
Guidelines which stipulates the starting point as 10 years. The
contemplated a sentence higher than what is in the
guidelines. I do agree with him.
The gangsters must not, when caught, be given the
impression that court condones the havoc they cause to the lives of
We are all entitled to live in peace and so do business
without let or hindrance from criminal minded persons. Weapons and
must be reserved for their proper use and not for depriving
citizens of their property or causing harm to their person. The
must make it clear that such conduct will not be condoned.
I therefore sentence the accused persons to 15 years
imprisonment on the first count. I sentence them to 18 years
on the second count. In respect of the accused involved
on both counts the sentences will run concurrently.
They have the right to appeal against the sentences.
Pronounced in Open Court this
2008 at Blantyre.
E. B. Twea