Home NEWS County News Mackenzie, 38 others to be served with witness statements and exhibits

Mackenzie, 38 others to be served with witness statements and exhibits

A Mombasa court has directed Shakahola massacre prime suspect Pastor Paul Mackenzie and 38 others to be served with witness statements in child cruelty and torture case.

The prosecution should also serve the accused persons who have been charged with multiple counts of children-related offences ranging from subjecting children to torture, assault, cruelty to children and infringing a child’s right to education with all exhibits it will rely on to prosecute them.

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The accused lawyer Wycliffe Makasembo Tuesday failed to appear in court for a pre-trial case conference

The trial Principal Magistrate Nelly Chepchirchir who proceeded with the matter asked Prosecution to serve him through his last known address. The accused persons’ physical appearance in court had been dispensed with.

Mackenzie and his 38 co-accused, who are parents of children victims rescued from the Shakahola forest are in custody after they were denied bond.

Chepchirchir directed that they remain in prison until their case is heard and determined after allowing the prosecution’s application to oppose their  release

“Having considered the nature of offences that the accused persons are charged with and the need to safeguard the best interests of the children who are witnesses in this matter and whom the accused may or have authority over, I find that these are compelling reasons to warrant all the accused persons to be denied bond at this point,” the court ruled.

However, the court indicated that it would expedite the hearing of the case to ensure all parties are accorded justice.

Mackenzie and his 38 co-accused were charged with 17 counts of offences under the Children Act 2012, the Prevention of Torture Act 2017, and the Basic Education Act 2013.

These charges include two counts of subjecting a child to torture with an alternative count of assault causing actual bodily harm, nine charges of cruelty to a child, and six counts of infringing a child’s right to education.

All 39 accused persons denied all the charges levelled against them.

The accused persons allegedly committed the offences on unknown dates between 2019 and 2023 at Shakahola Forest, Kilifi County.

The prosecution team includes Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecution, Mr. Peter Kiprop; Principal Prosecution Counsels Victor Owiti and Betty Rubia; and Prosecution Counsels Eunice Odongo and Biasha Khalifa.

The matter will come up for mention on 2 May 2024 to confirm affidavit of service and fix a hearing date.


Haniel Mengistu
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