3 Face Life Imprisonment Over Ksh3,500

  • The Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi as pictured on November 18, 2019.
    The Milimani Law Courts in Nairobi as pictured on November 18, 2019.
    Simon Kiragu
    Kenyans.co.ke
  • Three men accused of planned and orchestrated a robbery in Nairobi's Uhuru Park are staring at a maximum sentence of life imprisonment after they were charged with robbery with violence on Tuesday, March 14.

    The three were accused of targetting a man walking in Uhuru Park at around noon on Thursday, April 9, and robbing him of his mobile phone valued at Ksh3,500.

    A report by Nairobi News published on Wednesday, April 15, identified the three as Carlos Nzikoa Wambua alias Peter Kimani Njenga, Dennis Munguti Mutuku and Paul Muinde Mutua.

    The victim, Stephen Sang Kipngeno was allegedly ambushed by a gang of four men of which the three were part as he walked home after visiting a patient at the Kenyatta National Hospital.

    Stock image of the Kenyatta National Hospital.
    Stock image of the Kenyatta National Hospital.
    The Standard

    On raising the alarm, police patrolling the area came to Kipngeno's aid and arrested two of his assailants: Wambua and Mutuku.

    Munde, who had already taken off, was pursued by Kipngeno who caught up with him outside police headquarters at Vigilance House and took him to Central Police Station.

    The stolen phone was, however, not recovered.

    The three suspects were presented before Senior Principal Magistrate Martha Nanzushi of the Milimani Law Courts where they denied the charges.

    Justice Nanzushi released the three on a Ksh300,000 each with the three being held at the Central Police Station until they were able to raise the bond.

    The hearing dates for their trial were to be set on April 30, when the case will be mentioned.

    If the three fail to meet the terms of their bond, they will remain at Central Police Station for the mandatory 14-day quarantine period after which they will be tested for Covid-19 before being taken to remand.

    Life imprisonment

    Under the Penal Code, there are currently five offences – murder(s.204), treason(s.40(3)), administering     unlawful oath to commit capital offences (s.60), and robbery with violence (ss.296(2) and  297(2)) – that attract     the death penalty

    A photo of the Central Police Station in Nairobi
    Central Police Station in Nairobi
    Daily Nation

    For a robbery to qualify as violent the assailant needs to be armed with a dangerous weapon, be in the company of one or more people or use physical violence on the victim.

    Although the death penalty still stands in the penal code, Kenya has not executed anyone for over 30 years with the last being in 1987 when Hezekiah Ochuka and Pancras Oteyo Okumu were hanged for treason following the 1982 attempted coup.

    While there is no policy to abolish the death penalty, presidents have on occasion commuted all death sentences to life imprisonment most notably in 2016, when President Uhuru Kenyatta commuted the death sentences of 2,747 inmates on death row to life imprisonment and in 2009 when President Mwai Kibaki commuted sentences of 4,000 death row inmates to life imprisonment. 

    In December 2017, the Supreme Court of Kenya declared the mandatory death penalty unconstitutional.