Mombasa Senior Resident Magistrate Vincent Adet temporarily stopped court proceedings to fundraise for a couple charged with stealing a bale of wheat flour.
The magistrate kicked off the funds drive by making a generous donation of Ksh1,000 while appealing to the rest of the people in courtroom to support the accused persons.
Despite not revealing the amount raised for the two, court staff and others in attendance during the session heeded the call and made their contributions.
The couple was charged with stealing contrary to section 268 (1) as read with section 275 of the penal code.File photo of Mombasa law courts buildingFile
The court heard that the two stole one bale of wheat flour from a local shop based in Shimanzi area in the Mvita sub-county valued at Ksh1980.
While appearing in court, they emotionally revealed that they were compelled to shoplift in order to feed their family, a situation compounded by the high cost of living and skyrocketing inflation.
The wife confessed that her husband called her asking her to carry the bale after a long day of work. She added that they did that to feed their children.
After hearing submissions from both sides, magistrate forgave the accused persons and set them free. Adet ordered a probation report to be presented regarding the two after reaching the final decision.
"On humanitarian grounds, especially for the first accused person, I have considered the circumstances under which the offense was committed and I sympathize with her situation, with three kids under her care and no source of income, and am of the view that let buy her a bale of wheat flour and some meat for today," the judge stated.
The incident comes just days after Alvin Linus Chivondo, the man who was jailed for shoplifting, was awarded one month’s shopping by former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko.
Sonko cleared Chivondo’s Ksh100,000 fine slapped on him by a Nairobi court, and also sent his team to receive him after his release from Industrial Area Remand Prison.
The former county boss then welcomed Chivondo in his office and offered him a job.
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga had earlier called for the unconditional release of Chivondo after his case went viral.Alvin Chivondo appearing at the Milimani Law Courts on Wednesday, April 13, 2022.Kenyans.co.kesteal
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