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“She knew nothing about the tusks!”

LUCKY LADY? Sibanda
LUCKY LADY? Sibanda

Suspected ivory seller begs court to forgive girlfriend

In an unexpected act of chivalry, a Zim man caught with elephant tusks took sole responsibility for the crime, begging court to go easy on his girlfriend.

“Please drop the charges against her; she knew nothing about the tusks,” Brain Ndlovu testified, staring piercingly at his woman as he attempted to get her off the hook.

Appearing before Francistown Magistrates Court this Tuesday, Ndlovu and his live-in lover, Mary Sibanda were charged with possession of two elephant tusks as well as being in Botswana illegally.

Cops swooped on the Zimbabwean couple on 22 January, reportedly catching them with ivory at Tonota lands.

It was heard Ndlovu initially escaped arrest but later handed himself in to the police.

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Having successfully managed to get the possession charges against Sibanda withdrawn, Ndlovu then sought mercy for himself.

“I was instructed by ‘Zama’ to take care of the tusks and sell them for P35, 000 to any prospective buyer. I also did not give the police a difficult time in this case and by having the tusks I did not know I was committing a crime.

“Looking at all these circumstances I plead with court to temper justice with mercy by not giving me a custodial sentence,” he urged.

Although he admitted being guilty to both counts, the big-hearted boyfriend maintained that does not automatically mean he should be sent to jail.

“Court should consider that I did not waste its time and resources but pleaded guilty. It also has to consider the time I spent in prison. By pleading guilty does not mean I deserve a jail term instead it means I will not have any brushes with the law again,” promised the first-time offender nervously.

Begging court to tax his pocket and not his freedom, Ndlovu added, “I plead for a fine that I can afford. And if I am charged a custodial sentence let it be and if it is a fine let it be a fine only.”

The illegal immigrant concluded that he is not a thief but rather ‘someone who believes in working for himself.’

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For her part, Sibanda acknowledged she was in the country unlawfully. However, she asked for leniency, telling court she had left her children back in Zimbabwe under the care of her disabled mother.

Sentencing in the matter has been set for 8 July. The pair, whose ages were estimated between 20 to 35, will remain behind bars until then.

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