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Detectives probe sex video in Fr Kizito saga

Monday June 22 2009

Father Renato Kizito during an interview at Shalom House on Ngong Road in Nairobi on Wednesday. Photo/STEPHEN MUDIARI

Father Renato Kizito during an interview at Shalom House on Ngong Road in Nairobi on Wednesday. Photo/STEPHEN MUDIARI 

By BENJAMIN MUINDI

Police were on Monday analysing a video clip and photos that allegedly show Father Renato Kizito, the Catholic priest accused of child abuse, having sex with a boy.

According to deputy police spokesperson Charles Wahong’o, CID officers were studying copies of the photos and the videos to determine their authenticity.

Mr Wahong’o, however, declined to divulge details of what experts were looking for to establish whether or not the materials were manipulated.

“We are professionals and have the capacity to determine the original materials and whether they had been fabricated,” he said.
The video clip in possession of the police and the Catholic Church shows an older man and a young man in bed.

Accusers of Fr Kizito say he is the one in the clip. The still photos also show an old man and a young man but the faces are blurred.

Meanwhile, supporters of Fr Kizito have started an on-line campaign to show how pictures can be doctored using Photoshop computer programme.

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Experts point out that while digital photographs can be easily manipulated, tampering with video recordings is a lot more difficult and expensive.

When the accusations were first raised, Fr Kizito denied that he had been molesting boys who benefited from his charity work.

The priest blamed the slur campaign on an attempt to wrestle the Sh3 billion charity organisation’s assets from his control.

“Let me state clearly. I have never sodomised any child. I challenge anybody to prove otherwise,” he said in a statement recently.

Catholic bishops last week promised to investigate the claims against Fr Kizito and take action if the accusations were found to have merit.

Whether or not Fr Kizito is proved to be a child molester will depend on the authenticity of the videos which his accusers have presented to the police.

It will also depend on the results of medical examinations on four boys who claim to have been molested by the priest.

However, the boys at Koinonia Community, the charity run by Fr Kizito in Nairobi, over the weekend sought to absolve him of sexual abuse allegations.

They also distanced themselves from their colleagues who claimed they had been sexually molested by the clergyman.

They claimed that the two were out to get money from the other trustees that were already fighting the clergyman.

They likened Fr Kizito to “a prophet who is never respected in his own city,” saying it pained them to see him being rejected by people he had assisted for a long time.