A 45-YEAR-OLD man who punched a child to death was sentenced to life imprisonment in the High Court in Labasa last Friday.
Mohammed Shahim bowed his head when he stood on the dock as judge Justice Daniel Goundar handed down his sentence to be served in a period of 10 years.
Shahim killed the five-year-old victim after he was frustrated over his request for some food while in his care on January 27, last year. He punched the victim on his chest and stomach until he was unconscious.
The matter was reported to the police where Shahim confessed to the offence.
In sentencing, Justice Goundar said the victim was without food for a few days and had approached Shahim on that day for some. "The victim was sickly and poor and he was asking for some food, instead you offered him some green coconut juice as there was no food in the house.
"He refused to drink as he opted for food," he said. "After several attempts by the victim, you ended up punching his chest and stomach until he lost consciousness.
"You even told your older son to lie to the victim's mother saying that he fell.
"The victim was left under your care as his mother and your wife went to town to sell some sweets for income."