Tourist robbers sentenced to ten months imprisonment

05 November 2018 | Crime

Leandrea Louw

Junior Noah Tangi Immanuel (28), Ian Harding (26) and Ipinge Herold (29) were convicted and each sentenced to ten months imprisonment on a charge of theft out of a motor vehicle.

The three men were arrested on 13 October after they used an unknown object to gain entry to a South African tourist’s car earlier the day. They managed to steal goods to the value of N$24 000. Items included a Nikon camera, N$4 600, ID, a driver’s license, medical aid card, firearm license, a sport cap and binoculars. All items were recovered except the binoculars and cash. The thieves used a black Volkswagen GTI as a getaway car after the theft.

During the sentencing magistrate Vicky Nicolaidis said theft in all its forms has reached alarmingly high levels, with cases such as this on the court rolls daily.

“The court is aware of the dire economic situation the country and its people face. People often resort to crime to make a living under such circumstances. However, that does not apply in this case. One of the accused stated that he stole in order to assist his family and as such no case can be made for poverty being justification for the commission of the offence. It would appear that the accused stole from the vehicle of the complainant merely because the opportunity presented itself and they did so with impunity and an utter contempt of the law.

“The court cannot have the accused believe that tourists can be viewed as soft targets that do not have the benefit of protection from the Namibian justice system. In stealing from tourists the accused blatantly and without regard sullied the reputation of Namibia as a safe haven, and such behaviour cannot be tolerated. The court must be seen to deal effectively with offenders who make themselves guilty of such offenses.”

She said that the accused pleaded guilty and showed remorse.

“They all have children and one would not want to deprive these children of their fathers. The sentence must still serve as a deterrent to the accused themselves and like-minded individuals.

“It us with the hope of the court that the sentence imposed will deter this accused and other would-be offenders to refrain from committing the same type of offence again, as well as to rehabilitate the accused. ”

The fact that this was their first offence and that the bulk of the property was recovered, was taken into account during sentencing.

The application for the car to be forfeited to the State did not succeed.

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