REPUBLIC OF NAMIBIA
HIGH COURT OF NAMIBIA MAIN DIVISION,
Case no: CR 39/2013
THE HIGH COURT OF NAMIBIA
In the matter between:
(HIGH COURT MAIN DIVISION REVIEW REF
Neutral citation: The State v
Kamati (CR 39/2013)  NAHCMD 234 (5 August 2013)
SMUTS, J et UEITELE,
Delivered on: 5 August 2013
That the conviction and sentence are
SMUTS, J.: 
This matter has come before me by way of automatic review. The
accused was charged with the common law offence of uttering. The
particulars of the charge were that on or about 18 January 2012 at or
near Keetmanshoop the accused unlawfully, falsely and with intent
thereby to defraud, and to the prejudice of Angala Filipus, offered,
uttered and put off a forged document, to wit a drivers licence well
knowing it to have been forged.
 The accused pleaded guilty to the
charge. In the course of questioning by the magistrate under s 112
Act 51 of 1977, the accused acknowledged that he had presented a
drivers licence to police at a roadblock, knowing that it was forged.
He admitted that he did so with a view to deceive the police officer
at the roadblock. He proceeded to admit the other elements of the
 The presiding Magistrate correctly
convicted the accused.
 No previous convictions were
proved. In mitigation, the accused said that he was 30 years old,
single with a child of four months old whom he supported. He said he
was employed in Cape Town, South Africa and assisted his parents with
their mahangu field in northern Namibia. He asked that a fine should
 The magistrate then sentenced him
to a fine of N$1000 or 6 months imprisonment.
 Despite the fact that the accused
was a first offender and the mitigating factors raised by him, I find
that this sentence is remarkably and astonishingly light in the
 Forgery and uttering is a serious
offence. It involves dishonesty. What compounds matters in this
instance is that a forged drivers licence was used by the accused to
deceive the police. He acknowledged that he did not have a valid
drivers licence. The forged licence was utilised to engage in an
activity which was unlawful without possession of a licence –
driving on public roads. The accused’s deceitful conduct was
thus directed at subverting the rule of law. In addition, driving
without a valid licence would create a risk on the roads to other
road users. These factors are in my view aggravating and should have
been taken into account.
 In my view a custodial sentence
was justified. Given the fact that he was a first offender, a portion
could have been suspended within the discretion of a trial court.
 The conviction and sentence are
confirmed. The purpose of this judgment is to express my dismay at
the inappropriately light sentence imposed upon the accused.