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Two hospital staff at Mama Lucy found guilty of child trafficking


Former Mama Lucy hospital staff Fred Makallah and Selina Awuor at a Milimani court when they were convicted of child trafficking and neglect offenses. [Collins Kweyu, Standard]

Two social workers at Mama Lucy Kibaki Hospital have been found guilty of child trafficking and neglect of duty.

Nairobi Senior Principal Magistrate Esther Kimilu ruled that the prosecution had proved beyond reasonable doubt that Fred Makallah and Selina Awuor neglected the three children who had been abandoned at the hospital and conspired to 'sell' them.

"The two knew they had a duty of care to the children but they failed the duty. I am satisfied that the prosecution has proved the case and find them guilty as charged," ruled Kimilu.

The magistrate found Makallah as the architect of the scandal and was convicted on two counts of conspiracy to commit a felony by trafficking persons and neglect of a child. Awuor was found guilty of one count of child neglect.

Makallah and Awuor faced a total of five charges of child theft, trafficking in persons, and neglect of official duties leading to the disappearance of three babies at Mama Lucy Hospital between March and November 2020.

In the first count, they faced a charge of conspiracy to commit a felony where they were said to have jointly engaged in the illegal business of trafficking children.

Makallah, who investigators claimed was the face behind the child trafficking after being captured in a broadcast by British Broadcasting Corporation negotiating with an undercover journalist to sell a child who had been abandoned at the hospital faced three additional counts of trafficking children.

"On diverse dates between April 2020 and May 2020 at Mama Lucy Hospital in Nairobi you received and transferred three children aged between 2 days and two months for the purpose of abusing the vulnerability of the said children," read the charge sheet.

On the count of neglecting official duties, Awuor were accused of failing to stop Makallah from trafficking the three children despite being aware that he was engaging in child theft.

The magistrate set September 26 for sentencing.

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