Child porn: Man jailed for six years

2018-11-16 15:26

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A Howick man was on Thursday sentenced to six years in prison for being in possession of child pornography.

The sentence was handed down by magistrate Muntukayise Khumalo at the Pietermaritzburg Regional Court.

Colin Russell Mackenzie (61), had pleaded guilty to being in possession of child pornography. He was convicted last month after about 142 images of naked children and 176 videos of children having sexual intercourse were found on his laptop.

The six-year sentence was handed down despite Mackenzie’s attorney, Rajen Manickum, requesting that the court rather sentence him to correctional supervision in order for him to be rehabilitated.

Manickum said Mackenzie was a first-time offender, and was a productive member of society. “He employs people and people like him should be out here making this economy work rather than straining our taxes serving time in prison,” said Manickum.

However, Khumalo said that while the court “might sympathise” with Mackenzie in that regard, he was the author of his own misfortune.

He said while one could argue that there are prospects for Mackenzie’s rehabilitation, the number of images and videos found in his possession called for a straight prison sentence.

The sentence imposed seemed to surprise Mackenzie as his body tensed up when Khumalo announced his sentence. He was immediately taken into custody and there was no application for bail pending an appeal.

In his plea, Mackenzie admitted that on February 9, 2016, he unlawfully possessed images and scenes of child pornography. He said that he was at home near Piccadilly Farm, Howick, when the police arrived and produced a search warrant.

Police found a laptop on top of a table in his lounge and seized it. They ascertained that there were many images on the device which contravened the Films and Publications Act.

“I have no valid defence for my actions. I am truly remorseful and beg the court’s mercy when imposing [the] sentence,” he had said.

Mackenzie turned 61 three days ago. Khumalo said Mackenzie is the first-born child in his family and he was raised by both parents. His father owned a dairy farm in Lions River.

Mackenzie was divorced in 1996.

He has two children and one grandchild. He studied a BCom in Accounting at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and at Unisa. He worked at various companies and has been running a transport business.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg
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