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Court lowers bail for arrested Nairobi Aviation students

NAIROBI
By Fred Makana | February 6th 2015

The High Court has reduced bail slapped on 15 Nairobi Aviation students arrested on Monday after protests against an expose on the institution, which was aired by Nation television.

Fourteen of the students had been ordered to pay Sh200,000 whereas one, facing a charge of being armed with a stone and bullying the public, had been ordered to part with Sh300,000 as security.

The students got a reprieve after High Court Judge Luka Kimaru ordered that they be released on a Sh5,000 cash bail.

The judge issued the orders after the students' lawyer Mukele Ngacho moved to the High Court to appeal against the bail terms given by Magistrate Miriam Mugure, saying they could not afford to raise the amount.

On Tuesday, the magistrate had said the charges against the 15 were serious and attracted hefty penalties.

But, their lawyer told the court the students were holding a non-violent demonstration when police dispersed them using tear gas.

He said they were aware of an order stopping the television station from airing the story.

Mr Ngacho said: "The students were made aware of the court order and they were peacefully protesting against non-compliance."

The students are accused of participating in an unlawful assembly, assaulting a photojournalist and damaging windows belonging to the Nation Media Group while protesting.

The case will be mentioned on February 16, awaiting trial on April 1.

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