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State loses appeal to have duo acquitted of robbery with violence, murder of MP kin jailed

By Allan Mungai | August 10th 2020 at 12:00:00 GMT +0300

The State has once again lost a bid to have two men accused of killing a relative of a Member of Parliament convicted for the crime.

The High Court in Nyeri dismissed the State’s appeal against the acquittal of Charles Mwangi Wanjohi and Michael Ndungu Kirito who had been accused of killing Nathaniel Mutitu, a trader in Mweiga Town. Mutitu, who was killed on January 14, 2015, was Kieni MP Kanini Kega’s cousin.

The duo was exonerated by Chief Magistrate Wendy Kagendo in 2018 for the robbery with violence charge.

They were accused of robbing Mutitu’s shop in Mweiga at dawn while armed with a pistol, shooting him dead and making away with Sh100,000 cash and assorted brands of cigarettes valued at Sh150,000.

A lower court had found that the evidence presented against Mwangi and Ndungu was circumstantial and contradictory and released them.

However, the State was not satisfied with the acquittal and appealed on grounds that the evidence against the accused had met the threshold for a conviction.

The Director of Public Prosecutions also argued that the Chief Magistrate’s Court had discounted the strength of the prosecution exhibits and overly relied on the defence exhibits.

But Justice Jairus Ngaah last week affirmed Mwangi and Ndungu’s freedom, agreeing with the Chief Magistrate’s Court that the prosecution case was not only contradictory, but was replete with co-existing circumstances that weakened or altogether destroyed the inference of guilt. The strength of the defence case was hinged on a vehicle that witnesses said was used as the getaway car.

Charles Mwangi Wanjohi Michael Ndungu Kirito Murder robbery with violence
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