THEFT NEAR THE CHURCH

Man lost car as he prayed rosary at the Holy Family Basilica

Investigations led police officers to James Kariuki alias Francis Ireri whom they arrested.

In Summary

•  David Makau's car was sold by a broker in Embu town for Sh420,000

•  The witness learnt that he had bought a stolen vehicle at the NTSA's offices

 

James Kariuki who was charged with stealing a vehicle from Holy Family Basilica.
James Kariuki who was charged with stealing a vehicle from Holy Family Basilica.
Image: CLAUSE MASIKA

David Makau lost his car as he prayed the rosary at the Holy Family Basilica on October 18, 2018.  

He had parked the vehicle outside the church.

Praying the rosary is part of Makau's daily prayers. After the prayers, Makau could not find his vehicle at the parking lot.

 
 

He reported the theft to the nearby KICC police station.

Investigations led police officers to James Kariuki alias Francis Ireri whom they arrested.

On Friday, Peter Muriithi, a state witness, recalled in a Kibera court how a broker's promise of a good car took him to Embu town.

“The broker told me that he knew someone who was selling a vehicle,” Muriithi said.

Two weeks later, the broker called him with "good news" - he had found someone in Embu with a car to sell for Sh520,000. 

Muriithi told resident magistrate Esther Boke that he and a cousin travelled to Embu through Nyeri.

They found the broker alone, next to where the car was parked. The offer price was Sh520,000 but the price came down to Sh420,000 after negotiations.

 
 

The broker – Kariuki - wanted the money in cash.

"I proposed that we look for a lawyer and the accused took us to an office where we signed an agreement."

He said the lawyer took his identity card number alongside that of the accused.

“I then gave the broker Sh420,000,” the witness said.

"The accused took us to a cyber (cafe) to check the vehicle's details. The name of the owner on the logbook read Jack Amollo."

The broker told him that Amollo was the one who sold the vehicle to him and that "if I want to change anything in the car I had to contact him.” 

Months later, Muriithi decided to change the vehicle from private to public use. "I called the accused but the line was busy. I called him again after some hours but he didn't respond."

Muriithi then went to the NTSA offices and requested for Jack Amollo's details.

He learnt that the vehicle had been stolen. "I went to Nyeri police station where I was arrested but later released to assist with the investigations."

Kariuki had denied five counts related to car theft, including forgery of logbooks.

The hearing will resume on November 26.