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Man sentenced to life imprisonment for incest

A Nyahururu court has sentenced a man to life imprisonment after he was found guilty of committing incest and impregnating his 15-year-old niece.

Joseph Mureithi Gathure was convicted of the sexual offense that he committed on December 16, 2020, in the Lanet area of Nakuru County.

During the hearing of the case, Mureithi claimed in his defence in court that he had been taking care of the minor and paying her school fees and hence could not do such an act.

The prosecution, led by Joshua Mokua, presented several witnesses during the hearing who testified against the accused and implicated him in the offense.

The prosecutor urged the court to sentence the accused to serve a life term in prison as provided under Section 20 (1) of the Sexual Offenses Act because the victim was underage.

On Tuesday, Nyahururu Senior Resident Magistrate (SRM) Vincent Kiplagat ruled that the prosecution had proved the case against the accused person beyond a reasonable doubt.

The magistrate, while delivering the judgement, said that he relied on the evidence and medical reports presented in court.

“DNA profile samples generated as per the report of the Government Chemist dated January 30, 2023 linked the accused with a 99.9 per cent chance to be the biological father to the child borne out of the offense.

“The court, in its conclusion, linked the accused to be the perpetrator of the heinous act,” said the magistrate.

SRM Kiplagat said that the accused person took advantage of the underage girl because he was paying school fees for her and would commit the act repeatedly every time the girl would go to collect school fees.

“The offense is grave and deserves no mercy, and therefore this court sentences him to life imprisonment,” said the Magistrate.

On January 24, this year, Gathure caused a drama in court when he opposed a directive by the court to have his DNA samples collected from him to determine the paternity of the child.

He told the magistrate that he would not allow his blood sample to be taken for DNA testing, describing it as an act of idol worship.

“Giving my blood out for testing is devil worshipping, and it equates to sacrificing yourself to the devil. It is even written in the Bible. I will not allow anyone to take my blood as a sample,” said Gathure.

Magistrate Kiplagat noted that the accused had failed to convince the court that the DNA testing was a form of idol worship and that the court’s order that he undergo the DNA test was in bad faith.

“DNA testing is done by people who are geneticists and are stationed at the government chemist. They will not harm you,” Kiplagat had stated then in court.

The accused person was given 14 days to appeal the sentence.

By Antony Mwangi

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