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VIDEO: Businessman jailed for 30 years over drug trafficking

Saturday November 21 2020
Business pic

Tanga. An economic crimes court has sentenced a prominent businessman in East Africa, Yanga Omari,66, to 30 years in jail.

The court made the sentence after finding the accused guilty of trafficking 1052.63 grams of illicit drugs of the type of heroin, which it decided to be destroyed.

However, the court set free two co-accused Rehema Ali, the convict’s wife and Halima Mohamed, who was the house maid of Yanga Omari.

The sentence, which attracted a huge number of residents of Tanga, was made yesterday by Judge Immakulata Banzi during the court’s ongoing meeting in Tanga Region.

Passing the sentence, Judge Banzi said she was sentencing the accused to a 30-year-imprisonment after finding him guilty of trafficking heroin drugs and to serve as a lesson to others engaged in the illegal drug business.

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“The court is meting out this sentence to serve as a lesson to others engaged in the illegal drug business, be it selling or trafficking drugs or getting involved in the drug network,” said Judge Banzi. In the sentence, Judge Banzi ruled that Yanga Omari’s property such as a VX car, a gun and a title deed which were seized after being related to the case, be returned to the owner because they were not related to the entire proceedings of the charges that were facing him. The judge freed the two co-accused, Rehema and Halima, because the evidence produced by the prosecution did not show that the duo were involved in the accusations, although they were living in the house of the accused.

Earlier, chief state lawyer Faraja Nchimbi, assisted by senior state lawyer Pius Hilla and state lawyers Salim Msemo, Cinsantine Kakula and Donather Kazungu, told the court that on October 1, 2018 in the area of Bombo in the City of Tanga, the accused were found with 1052.63 grams of drugs of the type of heroin.

The state lawyers further told the court that the accused persons were found with the drugs while they were in the process of trafficking them and that before doing that they were arrested.

The accused, Yanga Omari, was defended in his case by a three panel of lawyers, Majura Magafu, Nehemia Mkoko and Mohamed Kajembe.

The sentence caused cries from Yanga Omari’s relatives and children, who were in court as they complained that justice was not done.

Yanga Omari earned popularity in both Dar es Salaam and Tanga regions including the neighbouring country of Kenya because he was a prominent businessman of food products.

The convict once featured for African Sports Club of Tanga as a striker before becoming a sponsor for both Coastal Union and African Sport including other football clubs of Dar es Salaam Region.

Not only that, but also Yanga Omari was a benefactor of different artistes and musicians in the country, who happened to mention his name in several of their songs.

People, who talked to The Citizen in the court’s premises about the sentence, said it proved how strong legal organs were to control the illegal drug business in the country.

“I made a follow up on this case from its beginning to the end as evidence produced by both parties went in tandem with the sentence made…due to his popularity a big job has been done to arrest and find Yanga Omari guilty of his crime,” said Zainab Jumbe, a resident of Makorora Ward in Tanga Region.

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Paskal Mabunga and Burhani Yakub.

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