The Judgement By Magistrate Chibwili, On Charity Katanga, Sets The Tone On Proceeds Of Crime Cases, Those Facing Such Charge Should Prepare To Go To Jail


EEP President Chilufya Tayali


Reading through the judgement, I feel worried for most of my friends facing this charge because the burden of proof lays on the accused to show that, he or she had a legitimate income, failure to which, you are sent to jail, I repeat jail, no fines in these cases.

The Magistrate handed a three year jail term to former deputy inspector general of police after convicting her of having been found in possessed of 10 Higer buses valued at K26, 282, 770 which were proceeds of crime contrary to Section 71(1) of the Forfeiture of Proceeds of Crime Act (FPOCA) no. 19 of 2010. This was between January 1, 2017 and June 6, 2022.

According to his findings magistrate Chibwili said that most State and defense witnesses seemed to have been known to Katanga and according to his observations with regards to their demeanor the convict and the witnesses had a cordial relationship therefore he had look beyond their relationship in analyzing their evidence.

Magistrate Chibwili said the claims by Katanga that her uncle Nelson Phiri who owns a construction and milling company to loaned her some money which she used to purchase the buses is an afterthought.

She said the evidence by Phiri does not corroborate with that of Katanga as he bragged about his companies obtaining contracts from government institutions instead of producing money trails as evidence to aid her case.

He said though Phiri’s financial capacity was not contested, his testimony was irrelevant as there is no nexus between the contracts awarded to his companies and him lending Katanga the money which she used to buy the buses.

Magistrate Chibwili said the testimony by Albert Chibeka who manages Katanga’s transportation business was equally immaterial as he produced cash books showing that the buses were generating income which were mere writings as there was no proof of entry in the receipt books.

“In my view, the investigations officer was justified in holding the view that there was reasonable suspicion in the transactions involving the purchase of buses. If the money that was paid to Higher for the busese did not come from her earnings as demonstrated in her answers, then were did it come from?,”He questioned.

“If the source of those funds could not be satisfactorily explained then it is safe to hold the view that they were proceeds of crime. If I hold that view with regard to the first two buses, it will follow that even those busese which were acquired later from what was raised by the first two buseses, will also fall in the same category of proceeds of crime because the funds used to procure them came from a tainted source.”

Magistrate Chibwili indicated that Katanga has failed to discharge the evidential burden placed on her by the prosecution as her defense is an afterthought.

“The prosecution has proved the case beyond reasonable doubt and I find that the accused possessed the 10 buses suspected to be proceeds of crime and hereby I find her guilty on a charge of possessing property suspected to be proceeds of crime and convict her accordingly,” magistrate Chibwili ruled.

In mitigation Benjamin Mwelwa who represented Katanga begged the court to be lenient in meting out punishment as she has served the country diligently by protecting the lives and property of the masses through her entire life.

He said madam Katanga is at the verge of losing her entire destiny and the conviction tag is enough punishment looking at her standing in society.

Mwelwa proposed that the court imposed a suspended sentence unlike a custodial sentence as the offense has no mandatory imprisonment term.

“Being gate keepers to the temple of Justice we plead that the convict be given a second chance by not sending her to prison,” said Mwelwa.

In handing down his sentence magistrate Chibwili said though Katanga is a first offender her misdeeds are unforgivable as she committed crime whilst holding a senior position in the police service.

He said the former top cop was a felony pursuit yet she was equally a wrongdoer.

“I have looked at the offense and the circumstances of its commission which happened at the time the convict was a very senior officer chasing after criminals. It is disheartening to find that she (Katanga)was doing the same things she appeared to be policing,” magistrate Chibwili admonished Katanga.

“ You have put a stain on the police uniform that you wore very proudly and the Police Service will suffer a lack of trust and confidence by your actions.”

He said Katanga needed to be given a custodial sentence to send a warning to public office bearers engaged in fraudulent activities.

“It is important to pass a sentence that will send a clear signal to those of us in positions of responsibility to be honest and act appropriately in our offices because after being caught the ‘fall from grace’ is much harder than for an ordinary citizen,” magistrate Chibwili decreed.

He sentenced Katanga to three years simple imprisonment with effect February 19, 2024.

Family members who witnessed their breadwinner declared a criminal, were left sad as all they could do was stare in disbelief and shed tears.

Whilst in the doc awaiting to be taken to the holding cells by officers from the Drug Enforcement Commission, Katanga maintained her cool and hugged her husband Chola Katanga who whispered words of hope and encouragement.

Katanga’s lawyer Isaac Simbeye has since filed documentation requesting the Court to admit his client to bail pending appeal……/magistrate-chibwili-plucks…/

RT: Mwaka Ndawa, from Kalemba with a few editions by me.


  1. I feel for her. Jail is not a pleasant place to be in, especially for a woman. It is the duty of a husband to guide your wife and ensure that outcomes like this do not happen. The husband should have said no honey, we can’t go this route. Whispering encouragements after she is sentenced is not good enough. It’s akin to locking the stables after the horses have bolted.

    Our prayer is that she will be strong enough to go through this ordeal.

    • Mwata you don’t know a woman. Who told you a woman with money can listen to advice????? The husband was thrown overboard the moment she bought the first two buses. She might even have started bonking young boys and bragging the husband is not good enough. Look at the way she was bragging that she would be president of Zambia after getting an acquittal!!! Listen to the husband my foot…the sentence is even lenient. She needed 10 years with hard labour.

    • High public offices are very tempting and it is best to be a good christian when one holds these offices to fight the urge to abuse them.

      If Charity was a pentecostal church goer, she was not going to eat of the forbidden fruit.

      I pray she becomes a Christian in jail. They pray and sing very well there. At best she was given only three years and SIMPLE imprisonment. It’s a good starting point for her salvation crusade.

  2. If crime changes its character, the law has to change too. No one is against legitimate asset acquisition from legitimate sources. To acquire expensive assets, you need financial resources and these can come from a variety of sources. It could be credit, inheritance, savings, dividend income from share ownership, a lottery win or earnings from employment for high income earners such as elite athletes and executives of big corporations. Financial resources from legitimate sources are known by tax authorities and are always traceable because they leave a trail. No one asks questions if Christiano Ronaldo buys a private jet.


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