Sithole sentenced to 3.5 years in prison

HARARE, Zimbabwe -- A Zimbabwean court has jailed a man masquerading as a female athlete, court officials said on Thursday.

Samukeliso Sithole -- a triple jumper and runner who
competed as a woman at several international sports events --
was convicted on charges of impersonation and offending the
dignity of a woman athlete who undressed in his presence,
unaware he was a man.

"He was sentenced to four years imprisonment, but six months
were suspended. Effectively he will serve three-and-a-half
years," said a court official in Kwekwe, central Zimbabwe, where
the case was heard.

Sithole won a gold medal at a regional tournament in
Botswana in June last year and won five medals at a youth
championship in Mauritius. He also competed in javelin and
shot-put competitions.

Sithole told the court at his first appearance that he had
both female and male organs and that he lived as a woman after
consulting a traditional healer. A medical examination showed
that he was a man.