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Africa News Fri, 22 May 2020

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Three police officers deny aiding suspect escape from cell

Three police officers were Thursday charged with aiding a kidnapping suspect escape from lawful custody.

They denied the charges and were released on Sh50,000 cash bail each.

The three officers, Vacity Chebet Kemeres, Stephen Akuom Ochieng and Koome Mungaria were charged at the Milimani Law Courts before Principal Magistrate Esther Kimilu. They face seven years in jail if convicted.

The kidnapping suspect, Martin Wasike, who is a Ugandan citizen, disappeared from Kamukunji Police Station on May 13. He had been arrested alongside two other suspects in connection with the disappearance of Abel Misati, a police officer, who has been missing since January.

Lawyer Alfred Nyandieka for the family of the kidnapped officer opposed the release of the three officers on bail saying the matter is of great public interest and once out, “they may interfere with investigations which will lead to the re-arrest of Wasike.”

“The kidnapped officer was a colleague of Kemeres, Ochieng and Mungaria before he disappeared without trace. Once released they will interfere with investigations and frustrate the re-arrest of Wasike,” Mr Nyandieka said.

But a defence lawyer Ken Odhiambo urged the magistrate to release them on free bond saying, “they are law enforcers and know the consequences of breaching bail conditions.”

Mr Odhiambo said bail is a constitutional right for all suspects whatever case they face.

Patience Bange, a State prosecutor, did not oppose the release of the three on bail.

She said due to the Covid-19 pandemic police stations and prisons should be decongested.

In her ruling, Ms Kimilu ordered the suspects to be reporting every Thursday to the investigating officer of the case at Kamukunji Police Station.

The case will be mentioned on June 4.

Meanwhile, another police officer was on Thursday arraigned over corruption charges.

Constable Koskei, attached to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC), was indicted for allegedly receiving a bribe of Sh110,000 from a traffic police officer to assist him terminate a corruption case.

He was charged alongside an EACC driver Richard Kemei Topila.

They denied three counts of corruption and were released on a cash bail of Sh150,000 each.

The two allegedly demanded the Sh110,000 money from George Manyala on April 13, 2018 in Kikuyu, Kiambu County.

Source: nation.co.ke

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