Reports that lawyer Paul Gicheru, who surrendered to the International Criminal Court (ICC) recently, has said that he knows the people who killed the late Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo are FALSE.
The reports emerged on Saturday, November 14, 2020, supposedly published by The Standard newspaper on its Saturday edition as the main story.
Business Today fact-checked the report and found it to be FAKE.
The genuine copy of Saturday Standard of November 14, 2020 did not carry such a story, as per the online and digital copies. Instead, the copies bore the story of Education cabinet secretary Prof George Magoha headlined “Taming Magoha” as the main story, following a move by the Public Service Commission (PSC) to strip him off his human resource management powers after he insulted an education officer in Uasin Gishu.
In a tweet, The Standard disowned the front page that spread the fake news bearing their masthead.
Lawyer Paul Gicheru surrendered to the ICC on November 2, 2020, following a warrant of arrest issued against him on March 10, 2016 on allegations that he interfered with witnesses in the case against Deputy President William Ruto and radio journalist Joshua Sang.
After the surrender, Gicheru was presented before the court for pre-trial.
Pre-trial entails identity of the suspect, ensures that the suspect understands the charges, confirms that language in which the proceedings should be conducted, and sets a date to begin the confirmation of charges hearing. This is according to the ICC.
This means in this stage, the suspect (Gicheru) is not allowed to give any information or defend himself during pre-trial.
In the case of Gicheru, he appeared before the Pre-trial Chamber on November 6, 2020.
The prosecution will be required to file their document setting out a detailed description of the charges and a list of evidence on which they intend to base the case by February 12, 2021, while the defence (Gicheru’s side) has until February 26, 2021.
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Gicheru will be required to file his detailed written submission between February 26, 2021 to March 15, 2021. This is the time the motive of his surrender will be clearly known.
“After that the prosecutor will have until March 27, 2021 to reply to the written submissions of the defence. And finally, the defence will have until March 29, 2021 to reply to the submissions of the prosecutor,” said the presiding judge Reine Alapini-Gansou.
As for now, Gicheru has no other way of communicating to anyone and any information can only be revealed through court proceedings and submissions.
Reports that Gicheru has revealed to ICC that he knows people who killed former Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo are therefore FALSE.
[ This story was produced by Business Today in partnership with Code for Africa’s iLAB data journalism programme, with support from Deutsche Welle Akademie ]