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Street vendor jailed for selling dagga

by Lesotho Times

MASERU — A Ha Tsolo vendor who claims he survives on selling marijuana because he cannot do normal work due to his disability has been sentenced to 10 months in jail.

He can however avoid jail if he pays a fine of M500.

Tlali Ncheke Ranyepe, 48, was arrested on Monday for using his street fruit vending business as a cover for selling marijuana.

He was convicted of selling and possessing the banned drug on Tuesday when he appeared before the Maseru Magistrate’s Court.

Ranyepe pleaded guilty to the charge and begged the court to be lenient with him because he was struggling financially and was physically disabled.

He told the court he used his illegal marijuana business to generate extra income.

Magistrate Teboho Thoso dismissed his mitigation, saying disability could not be used as an excuse to commit crime.

Pitso Ground police said Ranyepe used to hide the marijuana under a heap of fruits that he sold on the street.

Meanwhile Lena reports that Thaba-Tseka police are investigating a murder case after  villagers stoned a man to death in Mohlakeng on Monday.

Senior Inspector Mohapi Letooane said a 37-year-old Tumang Pitso of Ha Chebane was killed after he was found knocking at a rented house where two high school girls are staying.

Villagers suspected that he had intended to rape the girls once he got inside the house because no one knew what he was doing there as he lived far from the village.

He indicated that the girls said they refused to open but Pitso attempted to break the windows when they started shouting for help.

“Three villagers went to help but one of them fell down which made Pitso aware that there were people coming towards him, then he fired a shot with a gun,” Letooane said.  

The deceased sustained two major head wounds, one at the back of the head and the second one behind the right ear.

No one has been arrested.

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