Lilongwe chief resident magistrate Ruth Chinangwa last Friday ordered the forfeiture of $19 450 (about K3.3 million) to the Malawi Government which a Nigerian national illegally possessed.
The magistrate convicted the Nigerian businessperson, Lawrence Nwoko, a resident in Malawi for 15 years, for possessing $19 450 illegally.
Chinangwa fined Nwoko K250 000 for the illegal possession and K500 000 for attempted transfer of the same or in default to serve one month in prison with hard labour. Nwoko paid the K750 000 fine through a cheque.
The magistrate said after ordering the forfeiture of the forex: â€œFor the avoidance of doubt, the foreign currency should be sent to the Reserve Bank of Malawi.â€
In a related matter that took place in Blantyre recently, principal resident magistrate Innocent Nebi convicted another Nigerian national Prince Chukwudi Agu for possessing $14 000, 28 000 rands (about K588 000) and 16 350 Mozambican Meticais.
He was fined K200 000 on three counts.
The court, however, ordered that the different foreign currencies be returned to the convict, an order the State has appealed against on grounds that the money was subject of the inquiry.
Agu, 42, an evangelist, was arrested at Chileka International Airport in Blantyre as he attempted to fly out.