A former insurance firm employee accused of plotting the murder of his nephew has been detained for a month.
Evans Masaku Kasyoki is alleged to have sought to benefit from two life insurance covers of Sh1 million and Sh8 million that he took out for 27-year-old Eric Makau, who was killed three months later.
Yesterday, Kasyoki was arraigned after his arrest on Tuesday in connection with Mr Makau's death in March 2014. Makau's body was found a few metres from his parents' home at Mbilini village in Kangundo sub-county.
Kasyoki appeared before Machakos High Court Deputy Registrar R N Kenei but did not plead to any charges. He will be detained at the Machakos GK Prison pending his formal prosecution on September 17.
In yesterday’s proceedings, Kasyoki’s lawyer, Victor Kariuki, who wanted the court to release his client on bond, traded arguments with State Prosecutor Cliff Machogu, who opposed the application for bail.
“The accused person has been in contact with the investigating officers and he is therefore not a flight risk. The prosecution should state why they have decided to press charges against the accused before conclusion of a pending public inquest into the case,” Mr Kariuki told the deputy registrar.
The lawyer argued that it was unfair for the prosecution to cut short an ongoing inquest into Makau's death just because the case had caught the attention of the media.
But Mr Machogu disagreed, saying, “The court should make a finding that this application is premature as it should only be made before a High Court judge."
The deputy registrar ordered that Kasyoki be taken for mental examination at the Mathari National Teaching and Referral Hospital in Nairobi before taking plea next month.
Kasyoki was picked up from Nairobi’s Kasarani area by Kangundo District Criminal Investigations Officer David Wafula on the instructions of the Director of Public Prosecutions, who has ordered a fresh probe into claims that Makau's death was motivated by profit after a media exposé by Citizen TV.
Warrant of arrest
The Directorate of Criminal Investigations at Kangundo Police Station had issued a warrant of arrest for Kasyoki on August 22 last year.
The warrant indicated that the accused was wanted for questioning over Makau's death. Kasyoki was arrested and detained at the police station but released a few days later. A public inquest into Makau's murder was later opened in a Kangundo court and was scheduled to conclude on August 22.
According to media reports, Makau, who had no formal employment, had two life insurance policies worth Sh9 million.