Taxi driver steals to a�?pay offa�� court fine!

Vuyelwa Sibindi
A notorious Bulawayo-based taxi driver appeared in court for the second time in less than a week after stealing sausages from a local supermarket.

Appearing at the Bulawayo magistratea��s court, Lovemore Sithole (30), faced charges of theft after he was caught red-handed by a security guard stashing two packets of sausages and two 440 ml Clere body lotion in his pants.

a�?You are back here again? Last week I ordered you to pay a fine of $30 after being caught committing the same offence but you continue stealing,a�? said presiding magistrate Franklin Mkhwananzi.

a�?My operating license had expired your worship and I was forced to find ways of fending for my family. I was also under pressure to raise money to pay the fine that is why I stole the lotions,a�? said Sithole.

However, Mkhwananzi was not moved by Sitholea��s explanation saying: a�?The courts will not condone such behaviour it seems that the fine did not serve as a deterrent to you as you committed the second offence just five days after my ruling.a�?

Shockingly, Sithole was only worried about not paying the fine as he thanked the magistrate for scrapping the $30 fine.

a�?I have been failing to pay the fine and to fend for my family. If the court has cancelled the $30 fine I am a happy man even though I still have to fend for my family which will be difficult when I am behind bars,a�? said Sithole.

But with a previous suspended sentence hanging over Sithole a jail sentence was inevitable.

a�?This is a court of law not an adult playground. A prison sentence will serve as a warning to other criminals like you. Everyone is facing economic hardships but they are not resorting to stealing,a�? he said.

Sithole was sentenced to four months in prison of which two months were suspended on condition of good behaviour for the next two years.