Kenya courtroom resumes trial of ‘killer cop’

Nairobi. A Kenyan courtroom on Wednesday resumed listening to a homicide case towards a former police officer accused of gunning down two unarmed youngsters in broad daylight seven years in the past.

Dubbed the “killer cop” by home media, Ahmed Rashid was filmed taking pictures the 2 younger males as they lay on the bottom on a busy avenue within the capital Nairobi on March 31, 2017.

The incident triggered protests within the East African nation, the place police are feared and face frequent allegations of extrajudicial killings however are seldom convicted.

In a packed courtroom in Nairobi, Rashid appeared earlier than decide Diana Rachel Kavedza as his former boss took to the witness stand to testify towards him.

At the very least seven different witnesses are anticipated over the course of two days.

Rashid has denied homicide fees and insisted he was finishing up his responsibility towards criminals.

Kin of at the least 41 individuals believed to have been victims of Rashid’s alleged brutality had been current within the courtroom at Kibera, Kenya’s largest slum.

Kenyan police are sometimes accused by rights teams of utilizing extreme drive and finishing up illegal killings, particularly in poor neighbourhoods.

They’ve additionally been accused previously of working hit squads focusing on individuals corresponding to rights activists and attorneys investigating alleged abuses by police.

There have been few examples of police being held to account.

That is regardless of Kenya’s parliament establishing the Worldwide Police Oversight Authority (IPOA) in 2011 to offer civilian scrutiny of a strong establishment additionally reputed to be among the many nation’s most corrupt.

Activists largely defend the IPOA’s report, saying police usually frustrate investigations by refusing to cooperate.

Rashid’s case “will break that custom and hopefully set a brand new course when it comes to accountability for police violence”, Amnesty Worldwide’s govt director in Kenya Irungu Houghton advised AFP on Wednesday.

“That is turning out to be most likely the case of the last decade within the sense of its complexity,” he mentioned, referring to law enforcement officials testifying towards their very own.

At the very least 118 individuals had been died in extrajudicial killings by Kenyan police final yr, native and worldwide rights teams mentioned in a report revealed in April.

In response to Lacking Voices, a marketing campaign group targeted on extrajudicial killings in Kenya, there have been at the least 1,350 deaths by the hands of police and 350 enforced disappearances because it started amassing information in 2017.

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