Tanzania: High Court Uphold Life Sentence for Gang Rapist

THE High Court at Kigoma Zone has confirmed the life imprisonment sentence imposed on a resident of Kakonko District, Majaliwa Chiza, for gang raping a house wife with other five gangsters on Christmas Eve in 2019.

Judge Ilvin Mugeta dismissed the appeal under which Chiza, the appellant, had lodged to challenge findings of the trial at Kibondo District Court in Kigoma Region, for lacking merits.

"I find no merits in the appeal which I hereby dismiss. The sentence of life imprisonment is merited because the rape involved a gang of uncouth men. Conviction and sentence are accordingly upheld," the judge declared.

He took into consideration all factors and was of a settled view that the prosecution side proved the case beyond all reasonable doubts.

The judge ruled further that the trial court was justified to convict the appellant.

During hearing of the appeal, the appellant had advanced four grounds, contending that the prosecution did not prove the case beyond reasonable doubts; the PF3 was admitted without being read over to him and that he was not identified as the actual offender.

In his judgment, however, the judge noted that the offence of rape is proved by evidence

establishing that a male person had had sex with a female person without her consent, with proof of penetration as a necessary ingredient.

The victim of rape, the judge said, had testified on what she went through at the hands of six men who abducted her and forcefully ravished her.

"I have no reasons to disbelieve her story which is well corroborated by (....) who arrested the

appellant at the scene of crime trying to dress up," he said.

According to Judge Mugeta, there was ample evidence that one of the rapists was arrested at the scene of crime and that man is the appellant.

Therefore, he said, the complaint that evidence of visual identification was not water tight has no merits.

On December 25, 2019, a lady (name withheld to keep her dignity and privacy), was enjoying herself at a local pombe club at Kanyonza village, Kakonko District.

At around 23.25 hours, the victim had drunk to her satisfaction.

She left alone for home after the husband delayed to pick her. Six men who were with the victim at the bar, including the appellant, intercepted her along the way, and three of them had carnal knowledge of her.

At all moments when they ravished the victim in turns, two men firmly suppressed her by pressing down her shoulders and spread her legs apart.

The victim's description of the agony she went through is not worth repeating.

Her yell for help attracted the attention of one man (....).

This time it was the appellant who carnally knew the victim. On his arrival, the rascals dispersed.

However, that man managed to arrest the appellant as he struggled to pull up his trousers and take to his heel like his fellow gangsters.

At this moment, the victim fell unconscious.

That man phoned other persons, who also phoned the village chairman.

It was the village chairman, who also phoned the police at Kakonko. When the police arrived,

they took the victim to hospital for treatment and the appellant was held under custody

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