Jowie Irungu convicted of murdering Monica Kimani, as Jacque Maribe acquitted by Kenyan court

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TV journalist and anchor Jacque Maribe (L) and her fiance Joseph Irungu stand in the dock during their trial for allegedly killing Monica Kimani, a South Sudan based Kenyan businesswoman, on October 9, 2018,Image source, AFP

A Kenyan court has found a man guilty of murdering a businesswoman, while his ex-fiancé, a popular news anchor, has been acquitted.

Joseph Irungu, also known as “Jowie”, slit Monica Kimani’s throat at her home in Nairobi in September 2018, in a case which shocked the nation.

Justice Grace Nzioka told the court he did not “give her even one minute to survive” and intended “instant death”.

Mr Irungu’s ex-partner, TV presenter Jacque Maribe, was acquitted.

But the judge said she should instead be prosecuted for giving the police false information.

Following the murder of Ms Kamini, authorities accused Ms Maribe of trying to conceal evidence by burning Mr Irungu’s clothes.

Justice Nzioka added that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) can take action against Ms Maribe if it chose to.

Ms Maribe walked out of the court room in a bright yellow suit celebrating her acquittal, while her former partner Mr Irungu remained in the docks.

Ms Maribe spoke to a crowd of jostling reporters and simply said: “The truth shall set you free.”

The trial of the killer of Ms Kimani, who had links to South Sudan, has gripped Kenya, even though no motive for her killing has been established.

The main suspect was Mr Irungu, who previously worked as a security officer for a private firm in Dubai and provided VIP security for a number of politicians in Kenya.

Mr Irungu was identified by several witnesses as the last person to see Ms Kimani alive at her apartment. He entered the complex with an ID card belonging to another person.

Ms Kimani was found tied up in a bathtub by her brother and his girlfriend after they failed to contact her.

Mr Irungu tried to defend himself by saying that he did not know Ms Kimani, but the judge debunked this and said they both attended Kenya Polytechnic and were in the same class.

Mr Irungu will remain in custody until he is sentenced on 8 March.

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