A Court in Kenya has sentenced three bus operators to death by hanging for violently robbing and sexually assaulting a female passenger in Githurai 44, three years ago.
The three, Nicholas Mwangi, a bus driver, and Meshack Mwangi, his conductor, and one Edward Gitau were charged with robbery with violence and assault.
The charges against them state that on the night of September 19 and 20 at Millenium petrol station in Githurai, jointly with others, they robbed a woman simply identified for security reason as HEW. They stole Ksh 10,200, a Samsung Galaxy mobile phone worth Ksh 27,000, one bottle of perfume, a clutch bag and make-up kit all amounting to Ksh 41,700.
According to Nairobi News, they also faced a charge for sexually assaulting the victim, an incident which caused an uproar after the video was circulated on social media.
Nairobi Chief Magistrate, Francis Andayi, who presided over the case said: ‘It takes the courage of a lady to report such an incident she retaliated and slapped the person and therefore suffered humiliation because of her right to privacy,’
The Magistrate further said that the complaint identified the 1st accused person as the leader of the gang.
“It is important to respect all human being because we are all equal and even more important to respect a woman not to humiliate or harass a woman.”
The court further disagreed with the defense submissions that the lady was too drunk and her evidence was not reliable.
Submissions by the conductor that he was not aware of what was going on were also dismissed.
“He was aware of the incident and took part in the heinous crime,” ruled Andayi.
12 witnesses were said to have testified in the case.
In mitigation, the accused persons pleaded for leniency on grounds that they have been behind bars for three years with one of them indicating that he is a family man who is the sole breadwinner of his wife and two kids.
In his ruling, the Magistrate said that prosecution had proved its case against the accused persons further slapping another 25 years on the second count.
According to him, the 25 years will, however, remain in abeyance.