Man sentenced to 45 years in jail for student's murder

Mustafa Idd at the Eldoret High Court. [Peter Ochieng, Standard]

The High Court in Eldoret has sentenced Mustafa Idd to 45 years in jail for the murder of Vera Beauty College student Emma Wanyota four years ago.

Justice Reuben Nyakundi found Idd, who had claimed to be a boyfriend to the slain college student, guilty of her murder.

During the sentencing, the Judge noted that the accused did not deserve mercy.

He said that the court would have awarded the convict the death penalty if it was allowed by law as was the case before the promulgation of the new Constitution.

“I have considered this matter as far as sentencing is concerned. I have also reflected on the judgment of this court and my view is that various establishments were made by the state and the defense,” Justice Nyakundi said.

“The victim impact statement tabled in court has pointed out what is justice in this matter, and I have also considered the mitigation factors by your legal counsel,” he added.

The judge found that the convict acted with malice, hatred, and ill will, and the murder of the college student was planned and premeditated.

“This is a murder that should have attracted the harshest and rarest punishment of the death sentence. But since the death penalty is excluded in the Constitution, I do not want to give a death penalty in vain,” Justice Nyakundi ruled.

“Taking the heinous manner in which, this murder was executed, I sentence you to 45 years in a custodial sentence. I have taken into account that this was a murder so heinous which was motivated by hatred, ill will, and with a motive to commit this crime without due regard to the sanctity of human life.”

While delivering his Judgment, Justice Nyakundi noted that the prosecution had proved the case beyond reasonable doubt linking Idd to the September 30, 2019 murder of the student.

During his defense, Idd told the court that he was in a relationship with the slain student.

In a sworn testimony he claimed that he was not within the Moi Bridge area on the day his girlfriend was murdered and he only heard about the incident later.

The trial began in September 2019 and the prosecution closed its case in March after calling more than 6 witnesses to give their sworn testimonies.

Idd has been detained at Eldoret GK remand prison since his arrest after the court declined to grant him bail on grounds that he was a flight risk.

He is also charged with the murder of businesswoman Nancy Etome on July 25, 2019 at Kapkoi in Uasin Gishu county. The case is pending before the High Court in Kitale.

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