The Lusaka High Court has found businessman Nshinka Kaputo with a case to answer in a matter in which he is accused of murdering his girlfriend, Precious Mangesana, and causing grievous harm to his three year old daughter.
High Court judge Cathrine Phiri has since placed Kaputo on his defence which will commence on June 24 this year.
In this matter, Kaputo is charged with murdering his girlfriend Precious Mangesana and acts intended to cause grievous harm.
Kaputo, 35, is alleged to have shot dead Mangesana, a MultiChoice employee, on October 5, 2017.
It is further alleged that on the same date, Kaputo shot his daughter in the neck, an act intended to cause grievous harm.
When the matter came up, Monday, justice Phiri placed Kaputo on his defence on both counts after noting that there was sufficient evidence on record that the accused was found with a gun in his hands and spare magazines.
She added that the gunshot wound that was found in the neck of the child was an act intended to cause grievous harm on a person.
“In count one, the accused Nshinka Kaputo stands charged with one count of murder. Information on record is that there is sufficient evidence that the accused was found with a gun in his hands and spare magazines. I find him with a case to answer in this charge. In the second count, it is understood that the child was found with a gunshot wound in the neck. This is a serious offence meant to cause grievous harm on a person. I find Nshinka Kaputo with a case to answer on both counts and place him on his defence,” Justice Phiri ruled.
During submissions, the State argued that it was a fact that Kaputo was at the scene of crime at the time of the shooting and that he was found with a fire arm which was confirmed to have been the one used to shoot Mangesana, as well as, the child in the neck.
It submitted that not only was Kaputo found with the fire arm, but he was also found with spare bullets.
The State further submitted that from the evidence so far, any reasonable tribunal would convict Kaputo.
“From the evidence adduced by prosecution so far, the court should find the accused with a case to answer. At this stage the burden of the prosecution is barely to prove prima facie case against the accused and not to prove the accused guilty beyond reasonable doubt,” it submitted.
However, Kaputo’s lawyer asked the court to find his client guilty of manslaughter and not murder.
The matter comes up on June 24 for commencement of defence.