Brothers jailed 44yrs for killing in-law

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Mashudu Net­sianda

TWO brothers from Plumtree who teamed up and killed their brother-in-law us­ing a ham­mer and an empty beer bot­tle dur­ing a fight, were yes­ter­day each sen­tenced to 22 years in jail.

Girt­fibion Ntuthuko Moyo (22) and his brother Mduduzi (35), both of Nx­ele, were con­victed of mur­der with con­struc­tive in­tent by Bu­l­awayo High Court judge Jus­tice Fran­cis Bere in con­nec­tion with the death of Love­more Moyo who was aged 29.

In his judg­ment, Jus­tice Bere said al­though the brothers had con­sumed al­co­hol, it was clear from their ac­tions that they knew what they were do­ing when they as­saulted Sibanda.

“The two ac­cused per­sons’ be­hav­iour clearly shows that they were in full con­trol of their fac­ul­ties de­spite hav­ing been drink­ing beer. They am­bushed Sibanda and struck him with a beer bot­tle with such force that he fell down be­fore they took turns to reck­lessly at­tack him us­ing a ham­mer,” he said.

In pass­ing sen­tence, Jus­tice Bere said the two men de­served a lengthy prison term for killing Sibanda in a cal­lous man­ner.

“We are con­cerned that there is no in­di­ca­tion that the ac­cused per­sons were re­morse­ful for their con­duct. They butchered the de­ceased in a cal­lous man­ner and in­tox­i­ca­tion must never be used as a cover up for such a hor­ren­dous crime in which a life was need­lessly lost,” he said.

The judge said the courts have a duty to pro­tect the sanc­tity of hu­man life through pass­ing de­ter­rent sen­tences. “We urge peo­ple to re­spect the sanc­tity of hu­man life. The two ac­cused per­sons should be sen­tenced to a lengthy pe­riod of in­car­cer­a­tion and ac­cord­ingly you are each sen­tenced to 22 years in jail,” ruled Jus­tice Bere.

Pros­e­cut­ing, Mr Thomp­son Hove said on De­cem­ber 19, 2015 shortly after mid­night, Girt­fibion and Sibanda were drink­ing beer at Masasa Bot­tle Store at Nx­ele Busi­ness Cen­tre when a mis­un­der­stand­ing arose be­tween the two.

Mr Hove said Girt­fibion vi­o­lently grabbed Sibanda’s col­lar and the de­ceased’s wife in­ter­vened to stop the fight. About 30 min­utes later, Girt­fibion and Mduduzi met Sibanda on a foot­path near the busi­ness cen­tre and Sibanda was car­ry­ing a ham­mer. “Mduduzi hit the de­ceased with a beer bot­tle on the face and he fell down and dropped the ham­mer. Girt­fibion picked the ham­mer and hit Sibanda sev­eral times on the face and ribs re­sult­ing in his death,” said Mr Hove.

Girt­fibion took the blood stained ham­mer to his home where he hid on the roof of his bed­room.

In their de­fence, Girt­fibion and Mduduzi, through their lawyers, Mr Tha­bani Mat­shakaile of Lazarus and Sarif Le­gal Prac­ti­tion­ers and Tanaka Mu­ganyi of Dube-Banda, Nzarayapenga and Part­ners, ar­gued that they acted in self de­fence.

They said Sibanda ac­costed them as they were com­ing from a beer drink dur­ing which a fight en­sued. They pleaded for le­niency, say­ing they acted in a spur of the mo­ment. — @mash­nets

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