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Judge asks Kinoti to report to prison and serve his sentence

By Paul Ogemba | November 26th 2021

DCI boss George Kinoti at a past function. [File, Standard]

Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti failed for the second time to get an order suspending his four-month jail sentence for withholding businessman Jimi Wanjigi’s firearms.

Mr Kinoti had applied to have the jail sentence temporarily suspended to await the outcome of his application which sought to review the sentence.

But Justice Anthony Mrima declined, stating that Kinoti has to comply with the decision.

“The court decline to give an order of stay suspending the jail sentence and expect that he will comply and surrender himself to prison until Monday when the court will rule on his application to review the sentence,” ruled Mrima.

Kinoti, in his application through lawyer Cecil Miller, accused the judge of illegally jailing him yet he is not the one holding Wanjigi’s firearms. Miller submitted that DCI has not refused to hand over the firearms to Wanjigi, saying that the businessman sued the wrong party.

Miller said Wanjigi should instead approach the Firearms Licensing Board, which is the body mandated to store firearms owned by civilians. Kinoti blamed the businessman for the mess that has led to the continued withholding of his guns, arguing that Attorney General Kihara Kariuki had asked him to visit the Firearms Licensing Board to collect the guns but he failed.

“The application leading to the jail sentence was brought against the wrong person. The DCI cannot have any role in storing guns belonging to civilians. The fact that the DCI picked the firearms from Wanjigi does not mean he (Kinoti) is the one that is keeping them,” said Miller.

Miller pleaded with the judge to suspend the jail sentence, arguing that Wanjigi misled the court concerning the facts of the matter when the DCI boss had explained to him that he was not the one in custody of the guns. He added that according to the Firearms Act, it is only the Board that has powers to release guns in its custody and that the DCI was wrongly enjoined as a party to the suit.

“He is already being tagged as a convict on the run when it is not his fault that Wanjigi has not received his firearms. Telling the DCI to release the guns will amount to instructing him to overstep the mandate of another legal body tasked with storing civilians’ firearms,” said Miller.

But Wanjigi’s lawyer Willis Otieno defended the decision to jail the DCI boss, arguing that he is already a convicted fugitive who should not expect mercy from the courts. According to Otieno, all the issues being raised by the DCI boss had already been determined when the court found that he is the one who raided Wanjigi’s house and confiscated the guns.

He added that the court has been very lenient with the DCI boss and gave him every opportunity to settle the dispute but he instead became arrogant and swore that he would rather go to jail than return Wanjigi’s guns.

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