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Over 200 suspected mungiki sect members charged

At least 200 suspected Mungiki sect members arrested in Nyeri during a swoop on the eve of the New Year were Wednesday  arraigned before a Nyeri court.

The suspects were netted during an operation to weed out followers of the former Mungiki sect leader Maina Njenga who has in recent times been facing various charges in local courts.

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Due to their large numbers and the interest the case attracted; their arraignment was relocated to the Central Police station.

By 2 pm, sections of the police station were converted into courtrooms to accommodate the 297 men who appeared before Senior Resident Magistrates Merceline Lubia and Mathias Okuche.

Outside the police station, families of the suspects milled at the gate and were forced to follow the proceedings from the fence and the gate after police cordoned off the area.

According to their charge sheet, the suspects who are between the ages of 19 and 64 years were charged with engaging in organized criminal activity contrary to Section 3(a) as read with Section 4(1) of the Prevention of Organized Crimes Act.

“The particulars of the offence is that on 31 December within Nyeri Central sub-county of Nyeri County jointly with others not before the court you were found to be members of an organized criminal group namely Mungiki and engaged in activities of the said criminal group,” the charge sheet read in part.

All 297 denied the charges and were released on a cash bail of Ksh 10,000. While releasing the accused on bail, both Senior Resident Magistrate, Mathias Okuche noted that the bail terms were reasonable given the gravity of the offence.

The matter will be mentioned before separate courtrooms at the Nyeri law courts between January 16 -18, 2024. The suspects are currently being remanded at the King’ong’o GK Prison.


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