A GOKWE man was on Wednesday sentenced to nine years in prison for stocktheft after selling a stray cow he found grazing in his fields after keeping it for six months.
SENIOR COURT REPORTER
Thomas Chuma (41) of Chief Siamchembo in Gokwe North was convicted on his own plea of guilty to stocktheft when he appeared before Gokwe resident magistrate Shepherd Mjanja.
Mjanja imposed on him a mandatory sentence of nine years in prison as he failed to proffer special circumstances as to why he committed the offence, as required by the law.
Prosecutor Tinei Tirigo told the court that sometime in October 2013, Chuma found the beast grazing in his maize fields and drove and penned it in his kraal.
He kept the cow at his homestead until March and decided to sell it after no one came to claim it. Chuma sold the beast to Aaron Magwatu for $300, but his luck ran out after the owner of the cow, Davison Siabenzu, received a tip-off that his beast was being kept at Magwatu’s homestead.
Siabenzu confronted Magwatu and the latter revealed that he had bought the beast from Chuma.
Siabenzu took his beast and made a report to the police, leading to Chuma’s arrest.