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Suspect in Willie Kimani murder dismisses confession

Thursday February 21 2019

Willie Kimani

Mr Peter Ngugi Kamau, a suspect in the murder of Willie Kimani, testifies at a Milimani court on February 20, 2019. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

SAM KIPLAGAT
By SAM KIPLAGAT
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One of the accused in the murder of lawyer Willie Kimani and two others on Wednesday said in court that he had been promised a monthly fee of Sh30,000 and other benefits to cooperate with the police.

Testifying before Justice Jessie Lesiit, Mr Peter Ngugi Kamau said officers interrogating him after he was arrested promised to get him a safe house, the monthly fee and a vehicle to use in his second-hand clothes business.

Mr Ngugi told the court that he had been a police informer and used to spy on their behalf since 2009.

He said when police picked him up on August 8, 2016, he thought they were seeking his services. As an informer, he would be paid good money, depending on the amount of work, he said.

CONFESSION

The accused said he was picked up at Waithaka bus stop in Dagoretti and taken to Kiambu where he was interrogated for hours.

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Among the police officers who picked him up were Mr Clement Mwangi, whom he described as a friend, and Mr Nicholas ole Sena.

Mr Ngugi denied making the confession, which the prosecution wants to rely on in the trial, stating that he does not understand English and he was given papers on which he placed his thumbprint.

The accused told the court that he refused to cooperate with the police officers this time round because they had not to pay him for a previous job.

He said after the arrest, he was kept in a safe house for about three weeks as they promised to use him as a prosecution witness.

He said while in the safe house, the officers treated him well; feeding him chicken and roasted meat as well as a packet of cigarettes daily.

TORTURE

At one point, the informer said, the officers interrogating him kicked him in his private parts injuring him.

Asked by prosecutor Nicholas Mutuku why he did not complain to prison bosses, the doctor who treated him or the court, Mr Ngugi said he feared repercussions from the police.

Other than Mr Ngugi, four Administration Police officers: Mr Fredrick Leliman, Mr Stephen Cheburet, Ms Sylvia Wanjiku and Mr Leonard Maina Mwangi, are charged with the murder of Mr Kimani, his client Josephat Mwenda and taxi driver Joseph Muiruri.

Mr Kimani, Mr Mwenda and Mr Muiruri were kidnapped after leaving the Mavoko law courts on June 23, 2016.

QUESTIONED

They later disappeared only for their bodies to be retrieved one week later from River Athi, near Donyo Sabuk police post. Their bodies had been stashed in gunny bags and thrown into the river.

The police claim that Mr Ngugi confessed about the killings and recorded a statement before Mr Geoffrey Kinyua, a police officer.

Earlier, Mr Sena told the court how they arrested Mr Ngugi and took him to Flying Squad offices where they interrogated him for about two hours.

He said Mr Ngugi later agreed that he was ready to make a confession and that he chose his younger brother to be present when the recording was done.

The officer told the court that they would read the statement to him and ask him whether he understood before proceeding.

The recording was done at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) headquarters on August 9, 2016.

The case was adjourned to March 6, when the court will hear submissions from the prosecution and Mr Ngugi’s lawyer.