Muslim cleric arrested for sex tourism denied bond
17 September 2015, 13:06
Nakuru - The Nakuru high court on Wednesday declined to grant bond to a Muslim cleric convicted of sex tourism pending hearing and determination of an appeal he has filed.
Lady Justice Maureen Odero while giving the ruling, said the appellant, Sheikh Ali Samoja who is serving a 10 year jail term cannot be entitled to the citizenly liberty since he was already in custody.
“The appellant was convicted and sent behind bars. His appeal can be heard while he is still in custody,” said Justice Odero.
The Muslim cleric, through lawyer Lawrence Karanja had appealed seeking to be released on bond pending hearing of his appeal and also to have his sentence quashed.
However, Justice Mulwa gave a green light of commencement of the hearing of his appeal in the next two weeks.
Samoja in the appeal claims that the magistrate who sentenced him erred in law and facts and that his sentence was unlawful.
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The former headteacher of Bilal Muslim Mission in Nakuru was convicted by resident magistrate Judicaster Nthuku on July 6 after he was found guilty of sex tourism.
The sheikh was accused of trafficking a 15-year-old minor to Nairobi where she was reportedly defiled by Sayyid Muktadha, a Lebanese as they awaited to relocate to Lebanon.
According to court documents, Samoja committed the offence in July 2012 at the Muslim mission in Nakuru’s Freehold Estate.
The court also heard that the Muslim cleric arranged for the travel of the minor to Nairobi from where she was supposed to be taken to Lebanon.
Samoja in testimonies in court said that it was due to financial constraints in the girl’s family that he had offered to assist her by linking her to the Lenanese who was to offer her a job in Lebanon.
A medical examination report presented in court during the trial by Dr Justus Nondi of the Rift Valley General Hospital in Nakuru indicated that the minor may have been defiled.
The court further heard that Samoja was arrested while planning to travel to Lebanon after the racket was unearthed.
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