Man who raped teenage ‘wife’ released by court
20 November 2015, 09:27
Nyeri - A 24-year-old man who had been sentenced to 20 years in jail for raping a 14-year-old girl was released by a Nyeri High Court.
Mwai Gichuhi was handed the imprisonment term on October 29, 2010 after he was found guilty of intentionally and unlawfully defiling a minor.
However, he was acquitted after spending five years in jail pending hearing and determination of his appeal.
He was arrested on October 29, 2009 at his grandmother’s home in Maragi village in Kieni west sub-County, Nyeri County.
The court observed that both the girl and the boy had admitted in court that they were living as husband and wife despite the girl’s young age.
The girl’s mother and father informed the court that their daughter was living with Gichuhi after she went missing.
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In his defence, Gichuhi said he was in love with the girl for a long time and she would occasionally visit him.
He said he had also advised the girl to first concentrate on her education but she declined and informed her parents that she wanted to get married.
Gichuhi was arrested by police after one week of marriage with the minor.
The Judge, Justice John Mativo said there was nothing to show that the girl’s parents raised the issue of age during the discussions they had with the accused person’s parents.
“I hereby allow the appeal, quash the conviction and set aside the sentence imposed and order that the appellant be released forthwith unless otherwise lawfully held,” read the judgment.
The girl, who is now 20 years old, had also written to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on December 3, 2015 asking that her husband be released to enable them raise the child they bore together.
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