29 December 2012

Kenya: The Monsons Still Waiting for Justice

THE family of British aristocrat Alexander Monson fears they are no to bringing his killer to justice, seven months after he died following his arrest by police in Diani.The family was speaking to the London Evening Standard.

Monson, 28, died after being hit over the head with a blunt object while in police custody in Kenya, according to a postmortem report.The police report prepared by CID investigation director Mohammed Amin confirmed that Alexander died from increased pressure in his skull following a blow to the head, but then admitted they did not know how, where or when he was hit, or by who.

The report was submitted to Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko on June 19 with a recommendation that there be a public inquest into Monson's death, but so far, no one has been arrested in that regard.

Lord Nicholas Monson described as "plainly ludicrous" the police report saying, "We strongly disagree with Mr Amin's final statement that in his opinion 'the circumstances surrounding the death of the deceased (Alexander) can best be determined by a public inquest," he said.

Lord Monson and his family have maintained that Alexander was assaulted while under arrest and that injuries brought on by blows to the head caused a brain haemorrhage. "In the face of global scepticism about the credibility of the Kenyan police authorities, we stood back to allow a full and thorough investigation," Lord Monson, 57, had told the Daily Telegraph in London.

Monson, was arrested on suspicion of smoking bhang after a night out with friends in Diani where he lived with his mother, Hilary, 58.Nicholas, the 12th Baron Monson, said he cannot find peace knowing that the crime has gone unpunished. Lord Monson said: "I couldn't live with myself if I didn't fight for justice. It is what my son would expect of me.

"I'm never going to let it go. I just couldn't. He was robbed of his life. All that great promise gone."The police report also stated that none of the injuries was inflicted by other prisoners. Lord Monson said the family believes he was killed by a policeman. "His colleagues protect him.

Both the man responsible and those officers withholding the truth of the crime still remain in their posts. Alexander's unpunished death sends an alarming signal to the families of anyone visiting Kenya."When somebody like my son can be killed in police custody and -- even with supportive publicity and pressure from our government -- it just remains business as usual, then clearly anyone can be killed in Kenya with impunity," he added.

The deceased lived in London but spent much of the year in Kenya with his mother and sister Isabella, 25, who run a complex of self-catering cottages.Lord Monson, 57, who lives in Chelsea, has set up a charity in his son's name to help prevent deaths caused by police brutality. "I am angry not just for my son but for all Kenyans, thousands of whom have also received such appalling treatment," he added.

The prospect of celebrating Christmas without his only son was "tough". "Every day without him is hard. His absence in our lives and those of all his friends is acutely painful. He was an extraordinary and charming young man," he added.

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