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Police pursue link between murders of Rita Waeni and Asian trader

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20-year-old Rita Waeni who was brutally murdered in a short-stay rental in Roysambu. Left: Somesh Ramesh.

Photo credit: Handout

On May 11, Somesh Ramesh, a director of a landscaping company in Nairobi, drove out of the family home on Brookside Drive in Westlands.

It was around 11.30pm when the black Lexus with a lone occupant sped off towards Gachie direction via Spring Valley.

A sister of Ramesh, who lived in the same house, did not find it strange that the brother was driving out at night.

Ramesh, 54, a director of Brandables Kenya Limited, would at times drive out at night to enjoy his own company even after he quit the bottle.

Before leaving the house, Ramesh had received a call on his mobile phone and he had told the caller that he (Ramesh) would meet the caller later that night.

This is the last time that the businessman was seen alive.

The following morning, Ramesh’s body was found dumped by the roadside on the Gachie-Ruaka road. He had three stab wounds on the chest and thighs.

His vehicle together with personal effects including mobile phones were missing.

Ramesh’s family did not know anyone who would want to harm him or the motive for his killing. 

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20-year-old Rita Waeni who was brutally murdered in a short-stay rental in Roysambu. Left: Somesh Ramesh.

Photo credit: Handout

On May 12, detectives from the Nairobi Area Crime Research and Intelligence Bureau were called to help with the investigations.

The investigators spent hours questioning workers at the home of Ramesh and also dusting Ramesh’s vehicle which was found abandoned in Gachie, some 16km from the city centre.

And when the dusting of fingerprints failed to give the desired results, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) detectives resorted to a forensic investigation of Ramesh’s mobile phone.

Police summoned two people who last spoke to the businessman on the phone before his death.

The two, however, could not provide any leads into the murder of the businessman.

One of the men questioned by the police said he was at his home in Athi-river on the fateful day. The other proved that on the night Ramesh disappeared, he was far from where his body had been discovered.

After hours of interrogation and forensic examination of the mobile phones of the duo, they were allowed to leave.

Still determined to solve the murder mystery, the investigators on Monday received what appears to be the most credible lead.

Mobile phone service providers told the investigators that two mobile phones stolen from the businessman had been switched off on Murugu Groove in Ruaka on the same night he was killed.

Strangely, the same building in Ruaka, where the signal of Ramesh’s phone was traced last, is the same location where a phone belonging to university student Rita Waeni, who was killed on January 14, was also last traced.

This latest development has renewed the hope of the DCI investigators that they will crack both the Waeni murder and this latest murder.

Waeni, a university student who went missing from her aunt’s home in Syokimau, was found murdered inside a hotel room in Roysambu in January.

Police recovered parts of Waeni’s dismembered body in the hotel room. Her head was retrieved from a dam in Kiambu.

An investigator familiar with the latest incident told the Nation that the killers of Waeni could also be responsible for the trader’s murder.

Nairobi police chief Adamson Bungei told the Nation on the phone on THursday investigations to find the killers of the businessman are in top gear.

“It will not take long before we unravel this,“ Mr Bungei said.

The dismembered remains of Waeni, 20, were discovered in rubbish bags at a rental apartment. Her phone and other personal items were also missing.

Some suspects, including foreigners, initially arrested following the murder were later released. 

Last month, the DCI released CCTV footage of a man said to be the prime suspect in the murder of the university student and appealed for public assistance to trace him.