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ODPP: Why we ordered a public inquest in Tob Cohen Murder case

 Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji. [File, Standard]

The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions has given its reasons for ordering a public inquest into the Tob Cohen murder case.

This comes a day after DPP Noordin Haji made an application at the Milimani Law Courts, seeking to withdraw the murder case against Sarah Wairimu and her co-accused Peter Karanja.

In a communique dated December 1, Haji attributed the decision to seven inconsistencies by the investigators.

He says opening a public inquest will allow members of the public to provide any useful information on Cohen’s murder to the authorities, as is required by the Law.

“The DPP decided that a public inquest be held with the aim of uncovering the persons behind the gruesome murder of the late Tob Cohen. The public inquest provides a platform for any person with information that may be useful to unravel the murder to avail that information through a judicial process,’ ODPP says.

Through his assistant Jacinta Nyamosi, Haji says the alleged forgery of the transfer of shares belonging to Cohen has not been exhausted by the investigators. He adds that it raises questions about who may have perpetrated the same.

According to Haji, the document examiners who authored reports on the wills and the forgery allegations of the transfer of shares gave conflicting reports. Therefore, the ODPP says they need to record statements and unveil their respective reports explaining the disparities.

“The recent withdrawal of the affidavit by Mr Gachomo John of DCI dealt a fatal blow to the case. Moreover, it raised serious concerns about the integrity of the whole process of investigations,” Haji’s office says.

“Telephone data of all the Police officers and any other persons of interest who may have come into contact with the alleged suspect at the time remains incomplete, yet such evidence may shed light into the planning and execution of the murder,”

Moreover, the ODPP says he wrote three letters to the investigating team, directing them to cover the 35 areas of investigation, the work has stalled to date.

According to the public prosecutor’s office, statements recorded by the police indicated that several police officers in civilian clothes visited the compound of the late Tob Cohen.

However, their identities as well as their purpose for visiting have never been disclosed.

The DPP also says he wanted Mr Mugwai, Gigiri sub-county police commander interrogated on his interaction and relationship with Sarah Kamotho but that has not been done to date.

Sarah Wairimu is the widow of Dutch businessman Tob Cohen, who was mysteriously murdered in 2019. She has been on trial for his murder.

The DPP proposed an inquest be filed before a Milimani Law Court.

“This will enable the contradictions that have affected the proceeding of this matter to be heard in detail by all parties. In addition, it will provide an opportunity for parties to present any information that had not been explored substantially before the court,” the DPP said in a circular dated November 30.

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