Four charged with murder of taxi driver
Four people suspected to be part of a kidnapping ring behind the killings of taxi drivers in Nairobi were yesterday charged with murder. However, Antony Mwangi Muchiri, Geoffrey Kamau Muiruri, John Joseph Kamau and Simon Njuguna Gachinga did not plead to the charges because they did not have a lawyer. A state lawyer, Joseph Kimanthi, told High Court Nicholas Ombija that police required seven more days to carry out further investigations.
Consequently, Justice Ombija ordered the four to be brought back to court on July 26 to take plea. The four were remanded at Kayole Police station. They are charged with killing Njiraini Thuo alias Tosti on July 5, 2012 at Kangemi in Westland district. The prosecution said the four posed as customers and lured Thuo from his house in Kangemi at night.
They murdered him, stole Sh 40,000 and his Toyota Probox, the court was told. His decomposed body was discovered at the City Mortuary by his relatives days after he went missing. Thuo is among a number of taxi drivers who have killed by organised criminal gangs in the recent past. Police say they are investigating more than ten cases in which taxi drivers have disappeared through similar way.
Yesterday the prosecution said it want to establish if the four suspects are involved in other deaths of cab drivers in the city. Mwangi and Njuguna are also wanted at Makadara court for robbery with violence. Justice Ombija directed the deputy registrar of the High Court to appoint a lawyer to defend them. They will plead to charges if a lawyer representing them will have been found by next week Friday. Murder suspects must be defended in the trial and if a family cannot afford to hire one, the State has an obligation to appoint one on their behalf. If a murder suspect cannot afford the services of a lawyer, the Judge directs the Deputy Registrar to assign a lawyer to him at the states cost.