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Police officers in lawyer Willy Kimani’s murder case denied bail

Four AP officers charged with the murder of lawyer Willy Kimani, his client and a taxi driver will not be freed until their trial is over.

Justice Jessie Lesiit in her ruling yesterday said the seriousness of the offence and the facts surrounding the abduction, torture and eventual killing of Kimani, his client Josephat Mwenda and taxi driver Joseph Muiruri on June 23, could not allow the court to set them free before the case is heard and determined.

The judge said Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko had presented compelling reasons for Fredrick Leliman, Leonard Mwangi, Stephen Chebulet and Silvia Wanjiku to remain in custody even though the Constitution guarantees every suspect a right to bail.

"It is the court's view that chances of a repeat of a similar offence cannot be underrated. Since the accused persons are police officers, their release is likely to send cold shivers down the spines of potential witnesses and families of the victims," the judge ruled.

PUBLIC INTEREST

The judge noted it would be a miscarriage of justice if the court took into consideration only the rights of accused persons and ignored that of public interest which it had been invited to protect.

She said due to the compelling reasons given by the prosecution, it is necessary to subject the accused persons to pre trial detention.

"It is on record that the deceased were coming from Mavoko Law Courts over a criminal case when they were abducted and later found killed," she added.

The mutilated bodies of Kimani, Mwenda and Muiruri were retrieved a week later from Oldonyo Sabuk River, stashed in gunny bags.

According to Justice Lesiit, the four officers were on duty on the fateful day and should assist the court in unravelling the mystery behind the murders.