THE prosecution suffered a setback after failing to secure a court in UK through which the trial was to be conducted vial video-link.
A request for adjournment was strongly opposed by the defence who stated the course of successive delays in the proceedings taken by the prosecution is prejudice.
Defence lawyer Careen Sadia said the prosecution had made parties believe “they had made adequate arrangements” before turning around to ask that dates be vacated once again “unreasonably.”
The video conferencing dates were granted by the court on July 20 2018 through an application filed by the prosecution.
On June 12 2018 the prosecution had indicated that it wished to conduct witnesses through video link and had been granted time to make necessary arrangements.
However, the prosecuting counsel Ms Gateru informed the trial court that she was not able to proceed because there is no court available in UK to host the conferencing.
Sadia referred the court to Article 50(1)(e) of the Constitution that the right to a fair hearing includes to have trials begin and conclude without “unreasonable delay.”
“It’s not in the interest of justice that EACC and ODPP are intentionally denying accused persons justice,” she submitted, asking the court to take judicial notice that dates have been taken severally.
She accused the prosecution of departing from what was deponed in an affidavit served on the defence in preparation to the video conferencing.
“Justice delayed is justice denied ” she said.
Ms Gateru told the court that she learnt about the inability to secure a court in time but had expected lead persecuting counsel Emliy Kamau to have informed the defence counsels of the circumstances.
Sadia pointed out that the procedure on video conferencing which involves notifying the central authority in Kenya and the Uk in time but the evidence in court clearly shows that they waited and delayed till October 2 2018 before they could inform the UK central authority to make a court available for the trial.
The UK Act on video conferencing clearly specifies the needs to make such request in advance.
Proceedings have been adjourned for further directions to allow the prosecution time to report to court on what it has done to mitigate the situation.