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Suspected gasser’s killer convicted

By GRACE CHAILE-LESOETSA
THE Lusaka High Court has convicted a 25-year-old man of Matero township for causing the death of a suspected gasser.
Christopher Sheleni was convicted after he pleaded guilty to the charge of manslaughter before High Court judge Mwila Kombe yesterday.
Sheleni was alleged to have joined a mob in the lynching of Emmanuel Maibwe.
Facts in this matter are that on February 16, this year, Sheleni was at his house in Matero Township of Lusaka when he heard a crowd of people making noise outside.
The crowd was chanting that they had caught a person (deceased) who was administering toxic substances in residential area commonly called a gasser.
It was then that Sheleni went and joined the mob that had gathered near Hillside ground and had surrounded Maibwe.
He joined the crowd that had begun beating the man with kicks and fists.
The police at Matero Police Station arrived at the scene and fired warning shots in the air to disperse the crowd and appre-hended Sheleni as he was fleeing the scene.
The victim was rushed to Matero Level One hospital where he passed on as a result of the beatings.
After the facts were read to him, Sheleni admitted that they were true and correct.
Judge Kombe then convicted him.
In mitigation, his lawyer from Legal Aid Board, Wina Vukovic, said Sheleni was a first offender who had pleaded guilty to the offence, thereby not wasted the Court’s time and the State’s resources.
Sheleni said in the eight months he has been in incarceration, he has had ample time to reflect on his actions which contribut-ed to a loss of a life.
He added that this fact will haunt him for the rest of his life.
Sheleni said he had a five year old girl whom he helps to support and also lived with his elderly grandmother and auntie.
Judge Kombe adjourned the matter to November 9, this year for sentencing.

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