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Three Plead Not Guilty of Possessing Wildlife Trophy

Three people denied charges of possessing wildlife trophy contrary to the law at Kajiado law courts on Wednesday afternoon.

Impounded Ivory/File

The prosecution said the suspects contravened section 95 and 105 of wildlife conservation management act 2013.

While appearing before Chief Magistrate, Becky Cheloti, Simon Kangethe Mukiri, Bonface Waigwa Wanjiru and Juma Lekupe pleaded not guilty of the offence citing that they didn’t even know that the wildlife trophies were in their car.

According to the charge sheet, the suspects were jointly impounded on the 8th of January at Kitengela town where they were flagged down by the Kenya Police officers who conducted a search on their Range Rover car registration number  KAN 050E and found 4 elephant tusks weighing 50 kgs with an estimated street value of Sh5 million.

The suspects pleaded with the court to reduce their bail terms because they are sole bread winners of their families.

“I would prefer if the court will relook into the bonds slapped upon us since our families require us this time when school are reopening because we are the only sole providers of our families,” they said.

However, the magistrate declined the suspect’s prayers citing that the matter is grave and the bail terms could not be waived.

“The matter at hand is of grave consequences and therefore the issued bail term of Sh5 million as personal bail or a bond of Sh 2 million will still be imposed upon you,” Cheloti ruled.

The Magistrate directed that the prosecution supplies the defense with all the necessary materials required by the defendants as well as instructing the prosecution to avail the impounded tusks as well as photographic images of the trophies during the next court session to ascertain the correct amount of the street value of the trophies.

The magistrate ordered the suspects to be remanded at Kitengela Police Station until January 23 when their case comes for mention. Full hearing of the case will be on January 31.

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