Three get long prison terms for killing taxi driver

17 Oct 2013 15:20pm
WINDHOEK, 17 OCT (NAMPA) - Three men who were earlier found guilty of having killed local taxi driver Alfons Rijatua at the Hage Geingob Rugby Stadium in the capital during April 2010, were on Thursday each sentenced to long prison terms.
Jackie Jackson, 22, Kaveto Pontianus Kwandu, 29, and 39-year-old Isaskar Nau-Gaweseb were all found guilty on 11 July this year by Windhoek High Court Judge Naomi Shivute.
They were each found guilty on a charge of murder with direct intention to kill, robbery with aggravating circumstances and attempting to defeat or obstructing the course of justice following the death of Rijatua, 42, who was killed by a single shotgun blast at close range in the chest during the night of 18 April 2010.
Jackson and Kwandu were each sentenced to 28 years imprisonment of the first count of murder with direct intent to kill.
On this count, Nau-Gaweseb was sent to jail for 30 years.
On the count of robbery with aggravating circumstances, the three were each sentenced to 15 years imprisonment, five years of which were ordered to be served concurrently with the sentence imposed on the murder count.
On this count, the three men were, therefore, each sentenced to 10 years imprisonment.
On the last count of attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice, the three men were each sentenced to two years imprisonment.
As a result, Jackson and Kwandu will each have to serve a total of 40 years imprisonment, and Nau-Gaweseb 42 years.
In addition, the court ordered that the shotgun used in the murder incident be returned to its rightful owner, Augustinus Jackson.
In terms of Section 10 (6) (a) of the Criminal Procedures Act (Act Seven) of 1996, each of the three men was declared unfit to possess a firearm for a period of five years, effective from the date of each men' s release from prison.
“All the three men have committed the heinous crime whereby the deceased person lost his precious life. This was not only a loss to the deceased person's family but to the Namibian society as a whole.
Jackie Jackson and Kaveto Pontasius Kwandu were supposed to maintain maximum law and order at their place of work (Hage Geingob Rugby Stadium as security guards) but instead they turned the place into a slaughter house. Kwandu, who was on duty on the day of the murder incident, even went to the extent of falsifying the security company's attendance register in order to cover their tracks,' said Judge Shivute.
She continued: “The three men did not accept responsibility that they are the ones who caused the deceased person's death and robbed him of his motor vehicle while they were armed with a deadly weapon. The three men are dangerous elements who need to be removed from the society for a long time.”
During submissions before judgement in April this year, State-appointed defence lawyers Trevor von Brockerhoff and Brownell Uirab for accused Jackson and Nau-Gaweseb, respectively, blamed the senseless killing of the taxi driver squarely on Kwandu.
However, Kwandu's defence lawyer Mese Tjituri did not take any of that lying down, and wanted to know what, if anything, Kwandu gained from the alleged killing and robbery.
State Advocate Ethel Ndlovu had asked the court to impose long custodial terms.
The defence lawyers represented the three convicted men on the instructions of the Justice Ministry's Directorate of Legal Aid.
The trio will serve their prison terms at the Windhoek Central Prison.