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American man faces arrest over death of Kenyan lover’s husband in beach resort

An arrest warrant has been issued for an American man suspected to have had a hand in the killing of his lover’s husband.

Justice Asenath Ongeri ordered the arrest of Mr Jacob Schmalzle, who is jointly accused with Ms Amina Shiraz of colluding to murder Mr Jimmy Jagatram Baburam. Ms Shiraz was Mr Baburam’s wife.

Ms Shiraz and Mr Schmalzle are said to have killed Mr Baburam at Medina Palms Resort in Watamu, Kilifi County, in a suspected love triangle.

The arrest warrant was response to an application by Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Vincent Monda, who told the court that Mr Schmalzle lives in Orlando, US.

EXTRADITION

“We request the court to issue the warrant for his arrest in order to kick off the extradition process (of Mr Schmalzle from the US),” said Mr Monda.

He further told the court that without the order, they could not commence extradition proceedings.

Mr Monda told Justice Ongeri that the extradition would not affect Ms Shiraz’s trial during which the prosecution will call 15 witnesses.

The trial was moved to Mombasa from Malindi following claims that a judicial officer had been bribed to influence the outcome of the case.

Justice Said Chitembwe of Malindi on Tuesday withdrew from hearing the case and directed that it be placed before the High Court in Mombasa.

Justice Chitembwe said he made the decision after a November 17 agreement between the prosecution and the defence when the case was mentioned in chambers and it emerged that a judicial officer had been compromised.

He also transferred Ms Shiraz’s petition that stopped her from pleading to charges preferred by the DPP before the Malindi magistrate’s court.

MALICIOUSLY CHARGED

Ms Shiraz claimed that the DPP maliciously charged her with conspiracy to defeat justice while proceeding with the murder trial in the High Court.

According to her application, the DPP’s decision was an abuse of the court process and criminal justice system.

During the inquest into Mr Baburam’s death, Ms Shiraz presented medical reports claiming he had been sickly before his death.

The DPP also recommended that Mr Schmalzle record a statement on whether he knew of the couple’s marital problems and if he knew Mr Baburam suffered from a renal disease.

Ms Shiraz yesterday sat calmly in the dock as the proceedings went on. She is out on a Sh10 million bond with two sureties.

Her lawyer, Mr Gicharu Kimani, asked the prosecution to supply him with the documents the DPP had not produced so he could prepare her defence. The hearing will be on April 19 and 20.