The Malawi Police Service (MPS) has announced that the final autopsy report on the 30 suspected victims of human trafficking, whose bodies were exhumed from a mass grave at Mtangatanga Forest Reserve in Mzimba District on October 18, 2022, has revealed that they died due to suffocation.
MPS spokesperson Peter Kalaya stated that the autopsy report, conducted and compiled by pathologist Charles Dzamalala, will be presented in court as evidence once the case begins.
The report, according to Kalaya, indicates that carbon monoxide was also a contributing factor, as the victims were locked up in a van.
“We have received the final autopsy report on the cause of death and it shows that they suffocated because they were locked up in a vehicle for a long time,” he said.
Tadikira Mafubza, a stepson to former president Peter Mutharika, is one of five individuals who were arrested on November 23, 2022, in connection with the deaths of the 30 people.
Mafubza has been charged with human trafficking and murder. He was held in custody for over a month before being granted bail by the High Court in Mzuzu on January 14, 2023.
However, the case is still ongoing, and two other suspects remain at large.
The State has not yet concluded its investigation, and a date for the continuation of the case has not been set.