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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Four more albino killers sentenced to death

Story courtesy of The Guardian newspaper Tanzania

The High Court of Tanzania sitting in Shinyanga region specifically to preside over cases of albino killings, delivered its second judgment yesterday by convicting and sentencing to death by hanging four accused persons.

Delivering the judgment which lasted almost four hours, High Court judge Gadi Mjemas sentenced Mboje Mawe, Chenyenye Kishiwa, Sayi Gamaya and Sayi Mafizi, all residents of Nkindwabiye village in Bariadi district, Shinyanga region to be hanged to death.

He said the four conspired and killed Lyaku Wille (50) of Nkindwabiye village between November and December last year.

Judge Mjemas said he was convinced beyond reasonable doubt based on evidence adduced from DNA results conducted by a government chemist, Gloria Machube that matched blood stains found on the weapons which were in the accused possession, that none other than the accused committed the offence.

The judge said despite an inconsequential mix-up of some facts in submissions by the prosecution side, “the truth remained intact and hence the fairness of the judgment delivered by this court against the accused”.

Defence lawyer John Mwigula said he was not satisfied with the ruling against his clients and would appeal.

The court heard from prosecution witnesses that the accused immersed into water the late Lyaku before cutting his head and legs and disappearing with them, and that the body was found buried near Mboje Mawe’s house.

In its first ruling in September this year, the High Court sitting in Shinyanga sentenced to death three accused persons, making seven in total.

Delivering the judgment, which lasted about an hour, High Court Judge Gabriel Rwakibalila said the court was satisfied that the evidence presented by the prosecution side proved beyond reasonable doubt the involvement of the three convicts in the killings.

He said the trio conspired and killed schoolboy Matatizo Dunia (13), an albino, on December 1, last year at Bunyihuna village in Shinyanga Region’s Bukombe District.

Those found guilty and now on death row are Masumbuko Madata (32) of Itunga Village, Emmanuel Masangwa (28) of Bunyihuna Village and Charles Kalamuji alias Charles Masangwa (42) of Nanda Village, all in Bukombe District. The court ruled that they committed the crime as per Section 16 of Criminal Act No. 196, as amended in 2002.

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