Home NEWS County News Shakahola massacre: Pastor Mackenzie and co-accused denied bond

Shakahola massacre: Pastor Mackenzie and co-accused denied bond

A Mombasa Court has denied bond to Shakahola massacre prime suspect Paul Nthege Mackenzie and 94 others in a case they are charged with 238 counts of manslaughter.

Chief Magistrate Alex Ithuku in his ruling concurred with the Prosecution that Mackenzie and his co-accused lack permanent place of abode.

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Hon. Ithuku further stated the prosecution had advanced compelling reasons as to why the accused should be denied bail or bond.

He ruled that the suspects are faced with seriousness charges hence there is high chance for them to abscond trial.

The court also ruled that Mackenzie and his 94 Shakahola massacre suspected mastermind will interfere with witnesses if released on bond or bail.

The Court directed that the suspects continue to stay in custody until their case is heard and determined.

The prosecution filed the application to oppose release of the suspects on bond arguing that they are flight risks.

The DPP further argued that the severity of the sentences facing Mackenzie, his wife Rhoda Mumbua and others, if found guilty, would make them abscond to escape potential penalty.

The prosecution further stated the 40 women and 55 men linked to 429 deaths in the Shakahola massacre are aware of the strength of the prosecution case against them, hence would jump bail if released from custody.

The prosecution further argued that the suspects have immense control and influence over key witnesses including victims and children and their release would jeopardize prosecution.

The court heard that the potential witnesses are associated with Good News International (GNI) where the accused persons are religious leaders or devotees.

The prosecution team submitted that Mackenzie’s character antecedent is against his release on bail having been convicted on his own in two criminal cases in 23 July 2017 and December 2023 respectively.

The accused were charged with 238 counts of manslaughter contrary to Section 202, as read with Section 205 of the penal code.

They allegedly in pursuance of a suicide pact for the object of their death and others not before court jointly killed 238 people.

They alleged to have committed the offences on an unknown date between January 2021 and September 2023 at Shakahola area in Malindi Sub-County within Kilifi County.

They all pleaded not guilty to the all counts of manslaughter, which were read to them for four and half hours.

The prosecution team include Senior Assistant DPP, Mr. Peter Kiprop; Principal Prosecution Counsels, J.V Owiti, Alex Gituma and Betty Rubia and prosecution Counsel Victor Simbi.

The court directed that the matter be expedited and fixed the mention for pretrial on 25 April 2024.

Hon. Ithuku directed that Mackenzie and his co-accused persons to be present throughout their trial.

Haniel Mengistu
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