Heirs to Cohen's wealth to be known today

Tob Cohen’s widow, Sarah Wairimu, with lawyer Philip Murgor at the Chiromo Mortuary yesterday. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]
The details of who slain Dutch tycoon Tob Cohen bequeathed his property will be known today.

Lawyer Chege Kirundi, who had been retained by Cohen, said the decision followed yesterday’s postmortem at Chiromo Mortuary, where his client’s body was positively identified.

“We shall be opening the will of the late Tob Cohen at 11.30am tomorrow (today) in our chambers,” Mr Kirundi said.

The lawyer sent letters to lawyers representing Cohen’s widow, Sarah Wairimu, and the legal team hired by Cohen’s sister, Gabrielle, and brother Bernard. Kirundi requested them to go to his office or send representatives.

SEE ALSO :Wife of missing tycoon Tob Cohen detained

Wairimu, who has been in custody on suspicion of killing her husband, was permitted by the court to witness the postmortem examination and help identify the body. She stayed throughout the exercise.

Officials said the examination’s results will be filed in court and would not be released to the public. Justice Jessie Lesiit had earlier barred police investigators and Wairimu’s defence team from commenting on the murder case.

Lawyers Philip Murgor and Cliff Ombeta, who are representing Wairimu and Gabrielle respectively, also said they would go to court today to seek orders to bury Cohen on Monday at the Jewish Cemetery on Wangari Maathai Road in Nairobi.

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Jewish rites

Mr Murgor and Mr Ombeta addressed a Press conference, where they said Cohen’s family had agreed to bury him in accordance with Jewish rites in a private ceremony that would start at 2pm.

SEE ALSO :Missing Dutch tycoon feared for his life, court told

“He was a Jew and they have their own rites that need to be respected. We intend to ask the court to allow the widow to be allowed to give her respect to her husband at the event,” said Murgor.

The lawyers said Jewish tradition required one to be buried 48 hours after death. They added that it would be a waste of resources if the parties involved disagreed on the way forward after the postmortem was conducted and the body freed for interment.

“We felt there was no need to argue over this issue and hence have agreed to conduct the event jointly. The rest will follow,” said Ombeta.

The lawyer requested the Director of Public Prosecutions, Director of Criminal Investigations and Prisons Service to help facilitate the compromise arrangement to enable Cohen to get a dignified send-off.

On Wednesday, Wairimu wrote to the management of Chiromo Mortuary asking it not to release Cohen’s body after it emerged that Gabrielle had indicated she wanted to bury her brother.

SEE ALSO :Missing Dutch tycoon last spotted at city club

“We expect the authorities to enforce her legal rights. It is not our client who must get a court order to bury her husband. To the contrary, it is the sister, who does not live in Kenya, who must get a court order,” said Murgor.

The lawyer said Wairimu was aware of her husband’s wishes, which did not include “being buried within the shortest time possible”.

“We, therefore, demand that the burial permit be issued to no one else but herself or ourselves on her behalf. In the meantime, our client undertakes to pay for the preservation charges of the body.”

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Tob CohenSarah WairimuChiromo Mortuary