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Murder suspect Kevin Kang’ethe sacks lawyer ahead of extradition proceedings

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has concluded the extradition proceedings against Kevin Kang’ethe, a murder suspect wanted by authorities to face trial in the US.

State prosecutor Vincent Monda told Milimani chief magistrate Lucas Onyina a copy of the extradition proceedings had been handed to Kang’ethe’s lawyers namely David Muthama and Anthony Kago.

But the court heard that Kang’ethe has since dropped the two lawyers and is now representing himself, in a move that has stalled the commencement of the extradition proceedings.

Prosecution told court the DPP is keen to conclude the proceedings before handing over the suspect to American authorities to face justice in the US.

Kang’ethe is accused of murdering his namely Margaret Mbitu in 2023 before fleeing to Kenya.

The request to have Kang’ethe flown back to the US to face justice was presented to the DPP through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in January 2024.

Monda told court all preliminary issues regarding the case have been completed and he is ready to share evidence that will be relied on at the Boston court where Kang’ethe will be charged with first degree murder under the American law.

Monda further explained that he is yet to receive responses from Kang’ethe who is acting in person.

Kang’ethe urged the magistrate to give him time to engage another lawyer.

In a brief ruling, Onyina allowed Kang’ethe to look for another lawyer.

He fixed the case for mention on March 1, 2024, for Kang’ethe to inform the court whether he has managed to hire a new lawyer.

Earlier Kang’ethe claimed to have been tortured and his former lawyer never raised the issue before court.

He also lamented that he is not privy to the investigations being conducted by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) regarding his supposed escape from Muthaiga Police Station.

The family of the deceased who was a Health Care Giver expressed disappointment at the pace at which the extradition proceedings are moving.

The victim’s lawyer and aunt to the deceased complained about the delay in concluding the Kenyan court stint.

Margaret Njoroge, 70, an aunt to the deceased, expressed disappointment at the delaying tactics being employed by Kang’ethe in a bid to stall the American murder trial.

Mrs. Njoroge urged the judiciary to expedite the local proceedings since the deceased relatives are anxious to have justice for their slain daughter,

“I traveled to America and saw the heavily mutilated body of Margaret Mbitu one would think she was being devoured by a wild animal, she did not deserve to die like that and we need justice for Maggie,” stated Mrs Njoroge.

The victims lawyer Ngaruiya Gitau concurred with Mrs. Njoroge that the suspect is employing delaying tactics by introducing extraneous matters by seeking his release on bond while the extradition proceedings are under way.

Ngaruiya said they are satisfied that the DPP has compiled the entire extradition file and now the matter is ready for determination.

Kang’ethe was ordered to be remanded at Industrial Area Medium Prison until Friday 1, 2024.

He was placed at a high security detention camp after bolting away from Muthaiga Police Station on February 2, 2024, where he was detained awaiting extradition to America.

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