The Lusaka Magistrates’ Court has sentenced a Zambia Army officer to 18 months imprisonment with hard labour for obtaining K3,900 from people on pretext of facilitating for their recruitment to the army when in fact not.

Clement Kanyembo, 40, a soldier from Arakan Barracks has been imprisoned by magistrate Prince Mwiinga.

In his judgment, the magistrate said the prosecution had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt that Kanyembo had intent to defraud four people whom he collected money from.

He said despite knowing the fact that there was no recruitment, Kanyembo went ahead and collected money from the victims.

According to Kanyembo, the money was to be used for medicals as a first step to recruitment.

In his lengthy mitigation, the convict asked magistrate Mwiinga to impose a suspended sentence so that his TB treatment was not disturbed.

Kanyembo said if he was given a custodial sentence, his children would suffer.

But the court refused to heed to the issue of an illness saying it was not a mitigatory factor.

Magistrate Mwiinga said Kanyembo’s pain was self inflicted and sentenced him to 18 months imprisonment with hard labour.

Those who were swindled are Lovemore Phiri, Lydia Chisempi, Roy Chilangwa and Richwell Sichinga.