30 October 2018

Kenya: No News Reading for Maribe as Court Sets Her Free

Photo: Nairobi News
Jacque Maribe and fiance Joseph Irungu in court.

Nairobi — Jacque Maribe, a television journalist who has been in custody for a month in relation to the murder of businesswoman Monica Kimani has been barred from reading news.

While granting Maribe's bail application, Justice James Wakiaga ordered the news anchor not to take part in interviews related to the murder case which has been set to hearing from June 18-27, 2019.

"1 The accused shall not read news, comment or participate in any interview directly or indirectly related to this case, 2 she shall not read news during the period this matter is fixed for hearing,3 she shall not interview any parties directly or indirectly connected with this case including the victim's family, advocate, prosecution witnesses, and trial court," Justice Wakiaga set out adding that the order was subject to review.

Maribe secured a Sh2 million surety bond with an alternative of a Sh1 million cash bail with three sureties of a similar amount after a month-long incarceration even as the judge declined a similar application by her ex-fiancé Joseph Irungu alias Jowie.

Irungu's application was refused after the court established that his subsequent appearance in court could not be ascertained since he had no known physical address in the country.

"Whereas the first accused (Irungu) has indicated that his siblings are likely to find him an alternative accommodation, there's no evidence placed before this court to support this preposition," Justice Wakiaga outlined.

"The first accused has no known assets in the country say for an intention to set up a private security firm. I therefore find him to be with not fixed aboard, lacking any deep emotional occupation or family ties in the country and is likely to abscond should need arise," he added.

During the Tuesday court session, it emerged that Maribe was not intending to go back to the house where she was living with Irungu at the time of her arrest.

It is based on the revelation that Justice Wakiaga concluded that Irungu had no alternative accommodation given the fact that he was living in Maribe's house at the time of his arrest.

"The picture that emerges from the Prosecution's evidence and the pre-bail report of the first accused (Irungu) is that he is a male version of a slay queen which for lack of better terminology I will call a woman eater," Justice Wakiaga said.

"He was living in the house of the second accused (Maribe), driving her car with no known source of income since 2017 when he provided security to some Jubilee Party politicians," the judge went on to explain.

Maribe and Irungu were charged on October 15 before Justice Jessie Lessit with the murder of Monica Kimani, a businesswoman found dead at her Lamuria Gardens Apartment in Kilimani on September 19.

Justice Lessit had referred the matter to Justice Wakiaga who heard bail applications by the two on October 24.

The Lady Justice had prior to charging Maribe ordered a mental assessment on the journalist when she was first arraigned before her court on October 12 after preliminary investigations into Kimani's murder.

The Prosecution had on October 1 secured an approval from Kiambu Principle Magistrate Justus Kituku to continue holding the suspects for eleven days to conclude investigations.

Maribe had been arraigned before the court having arrested on September 29 during a routine questioning by detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).

The Tuesday ruling was a climax of a strong defense put up by Maribe through her lawyer Katwa Kigen, the prime time television news distancing herself from the actions of Irungu.

In a 35-point affidavit sworn on October 17, Maribe deponed that she was just Irungu's lover at the time the crime is said to have been committed wondering why she had been charged with Monica's murder seemingly because she was in a romantic relationship with him.

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