TRIO DENIED BAIL FOR STRIPPING, ROBBING, ASSAULTING WOMAN IN 2014
A Nairobi bus crew facing charges of stripping and sexually assaulting a female passenger will defend themselves on November 15, a Nairobi court ruled after they were found with a case to answer.
Trial magistrate Daniel Ogembo put on defence Githurai 44 bus driver Nicholas Chege Mwangi and conductor Meshack Mburu Mwangi, as well as Edward Kamau.
“Considering the evidence on record and the testimony of the 12 prosecution witnesses, l find that they have a case to answer and order they be put on their defence,” he said.
The three are also charged with a capital offence stating they robbed the woman of personal effects amounting to Sh41,700. All the accused are being represented by lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui.
They have been also accused of robbing the 21-year-old woman, identified only by her initials H.E.W., between September 19 and 20, 2014 at Millennium petrol station in Githurai 44, Kasarani, Nairobi county.
They are also accused of sexually assaulting her. Kamau is alleged to have recorded the indecent act, which was circulated on social media. Over 15 witnesses completed their testimony in the case.
The accused persons, who have been in custody since they first appeared in court, were denied bail by former trial magistrate Lucy Mbugua after the prosecution opposed their release on bond, stating that the possible punishment awaiting the suspects, a death penalty and possible life sentence, may scare them away from attending further sessions.
Prosecutor Duncan Ondimu had also informed the court that their safety “may not be guaranteed outside the court’s jurisdiction, as the act had drawn public outrage” after a video clip showing the assault went viral.
While dismissing their bail application, Mbugua said there are enough compelling reasons to deny the m bail, terming their sexual offences “gross and abhorrent.”