Lawyer under ICC trial, Paul Gicheru, is dead
Paul Gicheru, a lawyer accused of violating the administration of justice by corruptly influencing witnesses in ICC proceedings, has died.
Gicheru was found unresponsive in his Karen house on Monday evening at around 7 p.m. Gicheru was then confirmed dead, according to police, and the cause of death is unknown.
“He had late lunch and felt unwell and went to bed but he did not wake up,” police said.
According to a report filed at Karen Police Station, he was discovered leaking froth from his mouth, raising suspicions that he had been poisoned. His son, who was also alleged to be a victim of the incident, was rushed to a Nairobi hospital for treatment.
On July 15, 2021, the International Criminal Court confirmed Paul Gicheru’s allegations of crimes against the administration of justice and committed him to trial.
The International Criminal Court (ICC), presided over by Judge Reine Adélade Sophie Alapini-Gansou, made its judgement based on the facts and submissions given by the Prosecutor and the Defence.
The Chamber determined that there are substantial grounds to believe that Mr Gicheru committed offences against the administration of justice in Kenya between April 2013 and the closure of the Ruto and Sang case on September 10, 2015, either as a co-perpetrator or under alternative modes of liability.
The alleged offenses were committed in furtherance of a single strategy carried out by a group of people, including Mr Gicheru, with the ultimate purpose of damaging the Prosecution’s case in the Ruto and Sang case.
According to the ICC, Mr Gicheru and other members of the common plan allegedly identified, located, and contacted the witnesses, offered and paid them financial or other benefits, and threatened or intimidated them, in order to induce them to withdraw as Prosecution witnesses, refuse to or cease cooperating with the court, and recant the evidence they had provided to the Prosecution.
The trial began on February 15, 2022, with Mr Gicheru pleading not guilty to all counts. Mr Gicheru’s closing statements were given on June 27, 2022. The court was intended to deliberate on the proceedings and make a decision on conviction or acquittal.