- Kibe was charged with human trafficking after 19 Ethiopians immigrants were found at his house.
- He had rented the house a month before receiving the immigrants whom he had promised to get jobs in Nairobi
A man who charged with trafficking 19 Ethiopians has been sentenced to four years imprisonment or pay a fine of Sh400,000.
Ronald Wangai Kibe was charged with the offence of trafficking in persons after he was found harbouring 19 Ethiopians at a house in Kasarani on March 8, 2019.
The accused denied the charges and the prosecution lined up five witnesses to prove its case. Among the witnesses were two of the Ethiopians, Fikire Ebiko and Firehiwot Abere.
They testified that while in Ethiopia together with the others, they were approached by a person who promised to get them jobs in Kenya. They then paid 500 Ethiopian Birr to a lorry driver who brought them to Nairobi.
Upon arrival, the accused received them and took them to a house where they were kept in a small room which had a toilet. He took their phones and promised that he would secure them jobs.
A day after, they were arrested by a police officer and taken to court.
Sara Wairimu Kingori, the landlady of the property where the Ethiopians were kept, testified the accused was introduced to her by an agent on January 1, 2019.
He expressed interest in renting one of the three bedroom houses and upon paying rent of two months at Sh60,000 in February he signed a tenancy agreement.
It was after police invaded the house that she learnt they were Ethiopian immigrants.
In his defence, Kibe testified that on the material date he had visited his rural home in Othaya, Nyeri. He received a call from his cleaner that he was needed in Nairobi.
Upon arrival in Nairobi, he was ambushed and arrested by police officers who were in the compound. He said when he left Nairobi there were no immigrants in his house.
His lawyer Dennis Magara submitted that the charge was defective as it did not state that the accused harboured the immigrants for purposes of exploitation.
But in his judgement Makadara chief magistrate Heston Nyaga said the job offer which was used to lure the victims to Nairobi demonstrates that there was an intention by the accused to exploit them or he facilitate exploitation by another person.
“The accused here was part of a wider group that had brought immigrants to the country and his role was only to receive and harbour them. After considering all factors I think a fine would be sufficient to punish the accused for his role,” he said.
“The accused is therefore fined Sh 400,000 and in default he is to serve four years imprisonment,” he ruled.
Edited by Henry Makori