12 years for heroin trafficker

Kabelo Dipholo

An eSwatini national, Ledion Bong’ Musa Masangane, 49, was yesterday condemned to 12 years behind bars by the Kasane Magistrate Court for trafficking heroin.

Masangane was convicted for one count of trafficking narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances.

The accused was arrested through the help of sniffer dogs at the Kazungula Border Post on 25th April last year (2022).

Court heard that during the search, 198 loose packages wrapped in cello-tape were discovered in the South African bound Isuzu truck that Masangane was driving.

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Although he tried his best to disassociate himself from the packages weighing a total of 204.6kg, Magistrate Kose Makobo reminded him that the burden to prove his innocence lied with the truck driver.

Masangane’s defence was that he had no knowledge of the existence of the drugs, and that he had parted with the vehicle for a couple of days in Livingstone before heading to Botswana, a story that the Magistrate dismissed outright.

Magistrate Makobo then ruled that the State had proven its case beyond any reasonable doubt.

“The catch phrase in this offense is ‘trafficking in narcotic drugs’. The State has proved that the accused was trafficking the heroin and was arrested having just entered Botswana from Zambia in a truck whose full details and identification are not in dispute,” said Makobo before handing down a dozen years backdated to the date of incarceration.

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