Five people who were last year charged with the murder of six bouncers in Masebula village, Butula constituency have been acquitted by the Busia High Court for lack of evidence.
Judge Kiarie Waweru set free Bonface Onyango Aduol, Ronald Oduor Aduol, Caroline Atieno Ngesa, Christine Apondi and Gilbert Odhiambo Onono after the prosecution failed to establish a case against anyone of them.
The five were arrested and arraigned last November at the Busia Law Court following the brutal killing of William Omondi Oriwa, David Okeyo Odhiambo, Philip Kwach Omware, Elvis Otieno Nickson Adera and Evans Onyango at Masebula Primary School playground.
The deceased had travelled to Masebula from Nyando constituency in Kisumu County to provide security at a funeral of a local businessman, Johannes Okoth.
Hell broke loose during the viewing of the body of Okoth. One of the accused, Caroline Atieno Ngesa was late Okoth’s first wife.
The body of Okoth, 35, who owned an electronic shop at Bumala town was found in a shallow grave with gunshot wounds, 10 hours after he went missing at Ligingo, on the border of Busia and Siaya counties.
Justice Kiarie noted in his ruling on Tuesday that the prosecution failed to convince the court that the accused were the mastermind for the death of the six bouncers since there was a huge crowd of mourners at the field.
According to the ruling, one of the prosecution witnesses told the court the six were killed by around forty people.
“The scene of the gruesome killing of the six people who are the subject of this case was at the football pitch of Masebula Primary School. We gather from the evidence there was a mammoth crowd of mourners. Witnesses testified that the football field was full to the brim,” read the judgment in part.
“This therefore means that the prosecution has failed to establish a prima facie case against anyone of the accused. I accordingly acquit each of them of the offence of murder under section 306 (1) of the Criminal Procedure Code,” it read further.