The Court Martial sitting in Sembabule on Thursday sentenced a UPDF officer to 50 years over the brutal murder of four people in Sembabule.
Private Paul Sserugo was convicted together with his colleague Matia Kawadwa after they pleaded guilty to the murder charges against them. They will both serve 50 years each in jail.
Court Martial presided over by Col Sam Mugenyi, sitting at Ntete village in Sembabule District, heard that Sserugo and three others killed Sylvia Kemirembe and her casual labourer Raphael Walugembe both residents of Ntete village.
Prosecution told court that the duo in February last year, attacked a grocery shop at Ntete trading center in Nakasenyi Sub County in Sembabule District where they shot Kemirembe and Walugembe dead in the robbery.
Dan Atwiine who was a CID officer attached to Kasijagirwa armored barracks in Masaka district told court that the accused persons also killed Ibrahim Mwanje and Allen Komugisha of Kachera village in Rakai District.
He says that on arresting Sserugo, he confessed that they committed the offense with the help of Chris Katerega who is said to have hired the duo, Simon Byakatonda and Julius Nsaba who denied the murder charges.
Court also heard that in a joint operation of police and flying squad officers two rifles that were used in the two separate murders, from Nsaba’s parent’s home in Kachera Rakai were recovered.
Col Mugyenyi also gave the duo’s accomplises a sentence of 60 years imprisonment.
He said that though Nsaba and his colleague had pleaded not guilty to the murder charges but evidence adduced before court by prosecution was enough to link them to the murders.
Prosecution had asked court to give the accused person a heavy punishment to deter others from taking part in such crimes.
However, Col Mugyenyi said that since Sserugo and Kawadwa did not waste courts time the punishment of 50 years imprisonment is appropriate. He warned security personnel against taking part in crimes because their primary role is to protect people and their property thus condemning Sserugo's actions.