A CHIPATA man has been sentenced to 18 years imprisonment for inserting his fingers in his one-year-five mouths step daughter’s private part as a way to “stop her uncontrollable crying”.

Masaiti Mwale, penetrated his fingers in the crying baby, leaving her with injuries which needed surgical repair by medical personnel.

In this matter, Mwale was initially charged with defilement and sentenced to 40-years-imprisonment with hard labour, but the same was reduced after it was established that he used his fingers and not his manhood to penetrate the child’s privates.

The matter came up before Court of Appeal judges Justice Catherine Makungu, Justice Kelvin Muzenga and Justice Dominic Sichinga sitting in Ndola.

The Court of Appeal, in handing down an 18-year-jail term for the offence of indecent assault, told Mwale that he breached the position of trust which the baby had for him.

According to records before court, Mwale was charged and convicted of the offence of defilement.

It was alleged that on June 4, 2019 in Chipata, Mwale had unlawful carnal knowledge of a child under the age of 16-years old and was convicted and sentenced to 40-years-imprisonment with hard labour.

However, when the matter came up, evidence showed that Mwale used his fingers and not his manhood to penetrate the child’s private part.

The evidence on record showed that Mwale indecently assaulted the child by placing his fingers in her private parts when he was in bed with his wife.

It was heard that Mwale, in his evidence in chief, admitted that when the baby could not stop crying, he used his fingers to play with her private parts, but she did not stop crying.

It was also noted that according to the evidence given by a medical doctor, the child had to undergo surgery to repair injuries caused by Mwale.

Passing judgment, Justice Makungu stated that being a step father to the victim, who was of a tender age; Mwale was in a position of trust which he breached and was an aggravating circumstance in the case.

“We further note that according to evidence of the medical doctor, the child required surgery to repair injuries on the vagina. However, in view of the fact that he is a first offender he deserves leniency and we hereby sentence him to 18-years-imprisonment with hard labour,” said Justice Makungu.