Cohen murder: Wife issues demands ahead of autopsy

Monday September 16 2019

Dutch tycoon Tob Cohen (left). His wife Sarah Wairimu Kamotho is facing charges in connection with his murder. PHOTOS | NATION MEDIA GROUP


Ms Sarah Wairimu Cohen has made a raft of requests ahead of a post-mortem slated to be conducted today (Tuesday) on murdered tycoon Tob Cohen’s body in the presence of his kin, defence and state lawyers.

Among the items Ms Wairimu has asked for include facilities for post-mortem x-ray, a visit to the site where the body was found, a bone-cutting saw and enough containers for the material to be analysed.

Justice Jessi Lesiit ordered that the body be examined on Tuesday after a letter was presented in court indicating that an independent pathologist, Prof Andrew Kanyi Gachii, who was recommended by the deceased’s family, was unavailable on Monday when postmortem was initially set to be conducted.

The letter was written by lawyer Phillip Murgor who is representing Ms Sarah Wairimu, the deceased’s wife and a suspect in his murder, after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and Director of Criminal Investigation (DCI) informed them on Saturday of the scheduled date and time.


However, the defence requested the court to ensure the family gets a pre-postmortem conference involving the legitimate stakeholders only, a visit to the alleged scene of crime and a visit to the location where the body was allegedly recovered.


The defence also asked court that arrangements be made with regards to facilities for postmortem X-rays, adequate facilities, particularly a bone-cutting saw, and adequate containers for the collection of samples for toxicological analysis.

Prosecution lawyer Nicholas Mutuku and the lawyer representing Cohen’s family, Mr Cliff Ombeta, did not object to the requests.

Justice Lesiit also directed that the suspect be subjected to a mental fitness test before pleading to the murder charges.

“Post-mortem to be done tomorrow, the defence and the family have engaged their doctors. Mental assessment to be taken within seven days,” the judge ruled.


And following complaints from parties in the case about leaking of information to the media regarding investigations into the murder of Cohen, the judge also barred the media from publishing details about the investigations or on any evidence touching on the case.

“The DCI, prosecution, defence and victims to desist from addressing the media on the investigations and evidence alleged to exist in this case,” Justice Lesiit ordered.

Cohen’s Amsterdam-based sister Gabrielle Van Straten together with her husband Mr Roy Van Straten attended the court proceedings.

Cohen went missing on July 19 and his wife has been in police custody on suspicion of being involved with his disappearance as well as the plot to have him killed.

Meanwhile, Ms Wairimu will remain in police custody for 10 more days until September 26 when she will be brought before court to respond to the charge of killing the 71-year-old Dutch tycoon who came to Kenya 30 years ago from the Netherlands.