Three former guards of Christian Life pastor, Jackson Ssenyonga, have been sentenced to prison after they were found guilty of robbing a member of the congregation who had gone to attend service at the church.
The chief guard, Israel Waswa was given five years while one of his accomplices, Ivan Wanyama, a chapatti maker was given 10 years after they were on Tuesday found guilty of aggravated robbery.
Godfrey Mwanda alias Kefa was given two years while another accomplice, Ali Ojulongo alias Peter who was also a guard at the church on June 8, 2018 when the offence was committed, was convicted of the same offence.
However, the trial judge, Isaac Muwata said he could not sentence Ojulongo in absentia as he’s said to be on the run.
According to Justice Muwata, the convicts’ defence against the charges was bristled with inconsistencies with one of them saying they were not at the scene (church) yet his accomplice confessed to having been at the church with them by the time the crime was committed.
“Although it was indicated by the convicts that it was dark and the witnesses could not have seen them, I disagree with them as the crime occurred at a church where there was sufficient light for the witness to identify them while participating in the crime,” Justice Muwata said.
The judge also noted that Wanyama was given more years in prison than his accomplices because he was the most violent person when they attacked and robbed their victim, Sam Mukula.
Mukula told court that he was robbed of Shs500,000 cash and a mobile phone worth Shs35,500 at church where he had gone to attend prayers.
Prosecution led by Mr Jonathan Muwaganya had asked court for a deterrent sentence arguing that the convicts who were servants at the church exhibited violent immoderation and should be punished for their acts.
He also asked for a warrant of arrest against Ojulango who is on the run which the court issued.
The convicts had, during mitigation, pleaded to court that they are first-time offenders, sole bread winners at their homes, and in their youthful ages who can reform once released to go back to the community.
They further pleaded that they have been remorseful throughout the entire trial while some claimed that they have pregnant wives who need their care.
Prosecution told court that the convicts and others still at large on June 8, 2018 at Christian Life Church being armed with blunt objects robbed Mukula of his Itel mobile phone and cash.
Court heard that immediately before and after the robbery, the convicts caused grievous harm to Mukula.