KAMPALA – The Court of Appeal has delivered 33 Judgments arising from its Criminal Session in Mbarara held in June.
The Judgments were delivered on Tuesday by the Court’s Deputy Registrar, Ayebare Tumwebaze, on behalf of Justices; Elizabeth Musoke, Stephen Musota and Remmy Kasule at Mbarara Main Prison.
The Court released six convicts who were serving a sentence of 45 years and nine months on two counts of Murder.
In their ruling, the Justices noted that the police never carried out proper investigations into the matter before sending the accused to court for prosecution.
“We must note that the handling of the investigations in this case by the police left a lot to be desired. Under normal circumstances, we would declare this a mistrial. The appellants have been however in custody for about 10 years since 2010. It would therefore occasion a miscarriage of justice if we order their retrial,’’ the ruling read in part.
The court ordered for their release unless there were other lawful charges they were facing.
The Court also overturned the conviction and quashed the sentence of one of the convicts in involved in the death of late Daniel Karuhanga and five of his workers in Kiruhura district after the Justices ruled that prosecution had failed to place the convict at the scene of crime.
“We find the 3rd appellant was not placed at the scene of crime and therefore we acquit him of the charges of murder and aggravated robbery contrary to the Penal code Act,’’ the Court ruled.
The Court however upheld the conviction of his co-accused and sentenced him to 25 years imprisonment for Murder, 15 years for Aggravated Robbery and 10 years for Rape.
The Court reduced sentences in 16 Appeals and maintained the conviction in 10 matters. In two appeals, the Court substituted two sentences of convicts.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Court, HW Ayebare said one appeal was completed at initial hearing in June adding that Judgments for the remaining six matters will soon be delivered.
In a related development, the Court will next week on Monday deliver the remaining five decisions arising from the Criminal Appeals session held in Mbale in August.