Stephen Wang’ondu

Stephen Wang’ondu, who is accused of plotting his son’s murder, at the Nyeri Law Courts on February 26, 2021.

| Joseph Kanyi | Nation Media Group

How Nyeri tycoon plotted gangland style execution of his son

What you need to know:

  • The tycoon had promised to pay the killers Sh160,000 for the job.
  • Mr Mwangi was found bludgeoned to death outside his house at Weithaga in rural Mweiga the following morning.

A Sh100,000 down payment to a gang hired by a Nyeri tycoon to murder his son was used to build a two-room house, documents filed in court have revealed.

The court filings also detail roles played by each of the five people, who are accused of involvement in the murder of Daniel Mwangi two months ago.

A flight risk

Mr Stephen Wang’ondu, who is Mwangi’s father, Mr Eddy Kariuki, Mr Raphael Wachira, Mr Geoffrey Warutumo and Mr James Mwangi, a driver, have all been charged with the January 1 murder.

Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officer Joyce Maluki has filed the affidavits at the Nyeri High Court.

She objects to the suspects’ release on bail, arguing that they are a flight risk. The officer adds that Mr Wang’ondu could interfere with witnesses.

In the affidavit, Inspector Maluki says four of the suspects have confessed their roles in the killing, implicating Mr Wang’ondu as the mastermind.

The tycoon’s driver is said to have been tasked with putting in place a team and plan to kill Mwangi on the father’s instruction.

“Evidence gathered so far shows that the first accused [father] contacted the second accused [driver], informing him that he had a job he wanted done and that he needed to get persons who could eliminate”  his son, the documents read.

Daniel Mwangi Wang’ondu.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Mwangi was last seen alive on the night of December 31, 2020.

According to detectives, the driver contacted Mr Warutumo about the murder plan, who in turn contacted Mr Kariuki and Mr Wachira. The four are said to have converged at a popular restaurant in Nyeri Town on December 31 to finalise their plan.

The affidavit indicates the driver then went to a hardware store in Mweiga Town where he bought a metal rod that would be used in the killing.

Mr Mwangi was found bludgeoned to death outside his house at Weithaga in rural Mweiga the following morning. A postmortem showed that he died of multiple cut and stab wounds.

For the job, Mr Wang’ondu reportedly made a Sh100,000 part payment to the gang through his driver.

Police have also said Mr Wang’ondu had paid the driver Sh20,000 upfront to facilitate putting together the gang and ferrying them to Nyeri.

The tycoon had promised to pay the killers Sh160,000 for the job.

 Stephen Wang’ondu

From left: James Mahinda,  Eddy Kariuki, Raphael Wachira, Geoffrey Warutumo and tycoon Stephen Wang’ondu at the Nyeri High Court on March 2  when they were charged with the murder of David Mwangi, Mr Wang’ondu’s son.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

While it is not yet clear how much each suspect received, one of them, Mr Kariuki, is said to have put up a two-room house from the payment. Another suspect, Mr Wachira, reportedly bought household items, including a subwoofer, using the tainted money.

Using call records, detectives have managed to place Mr Wachira and Mr Kariuki at the crime scene, thus linking them in the killing.

The driver relocated to Githurai in Kiambu County where he was arrested on February 20.

Mr Kariuki was arrested a day later alongside Mr Warutumo in Embu Town and Mr Wachira at his hideout in Pipeline Estate, Nairobi, on February 25.

Different prisons

The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, led by Mr Duncan Ondimu, last week told the court that the investigating officer had raised concerns about the suspects’ welfare, requesting that they be detained in different prisons while the case was heard and determined.

The detectives have also launched investigations into a suspected case of insurance fraud after it emerged that the businessman had initiated a life insurance claim barely a month after his son’s burial.

The suspects will appear in court today for the hearing of their bond application.