It wasn’t me, jailed cat meat seller tells court

James Mukangi Kimani at Nakuru High court on July 10, 2018 when he appeared before Justice Joel Ngugi for a review of his case which he had been found guilty of slaughtering a cat and was sentenced to three years imprisonment. [Kipsang Joseph/Standard]
A man jailed for three years for selling cat meat in Nakuru now says he was wrongly convicted.

The High Court in Nakuru yesterday reduced the jail term handed to James Mukangi Kimani to two years.

Kimani told the court during a review of his case that the cat was hit by a car, and he only collected the carcass.

Justice Joel Ngugi said his sentences would run concurrently. Kimani faced a second count of slaughtering an animal.

School girls

He claimed he was drunk at the time and only used the carcass to scare some school girls.

“I was wrongly sentenced by the court. I was drunk and was only playing around with the carcass. The cat had been hit by a car and I’m not responsible for its death,” said Kimani.

Kimani claimed he fell asleep by the roadside, with the carcass beside him only to wake up surrounded by people.

Officers arrived at the scene and arrested him.

The court asked him why he pleaded guilty to “slaughtering an animal for human consumption in a manner that is deceptive as regard to its character, nature, value, substance, quality and merit contrary to the Food, Drugs and Chemical Substance Act.

 Kimani said he did so since he was caught with the carcass.

“I pleaded guilty since I was caught with the cat carcass,” he said.

Second count

He faced a second count of slaughtering an animal on June 24 in an open ground opposite Nakuru Provincial General Hospital, which is an undesignated place, contrary to regulations set under the Meat Control Act.

Kimani asked the court to be lenient on him and reduce the three-year sentence imposed on him.

“Reduce the sentence imposed on me. I have never slaughtered a cat,” he said.

State counsel Jackson Motende said the man had pleaded guilty and the magistrate was guided by law in imposing the sentence.

A Sh50,000 fine imposed on Kimani for slaughtering the animal in an undesignated place was, however, termed excessive. According to the prosecution, it should have been Sh10, 000.

Kimani had earlier informed the court that he was framed and had no intention of hurting anyone.

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