A court in Zomba has sentenced a 39-year-old Roman Catholic Church priest to 17 years in jail for raping a 15 year-old girl.
The Zomba Senior Resident Magistrate Court’s Rodrick Michongwe handed the jail term to Father Numeri Mweta of Lisanjala Parish yesterday.
On Monday, the court found Mweta guilty of abduction, defilement and procuration of the 15-year-old girl.
On Thursday the priest was given two years for abduction, five years for defilement and 10 years for procuration of the 15-year-old girl. Magistrate Michongwe ruled that the sentences should run concurrently.
After the ruling, Prosecutor Patrick Chambuluka was pleased with the judgment saying the priest was supposed to protect the child.
Mweta sexually abused the girl in July, 2018. On July 19, 2018 the girl went missing and when she went back to her parent’s home two days later she told them that she was with the priest.
The court heard that the priest offered money to the girl’s father to withdraw the case, but the father rejected the offer.
It was also learnt that the priest impregnated the girl and rented her a house at Liwonde and later in Zomba.