Pubdate: Fri, 17 Sep 2004
Source: Daily Nation (Kenya)
Copyright: 2004 Nation Newspapers


A Nigerian priest yesterday accused the police of framing him up in a
Sh9.5 million drug trafficking case.

Mr Kingsley Chukwu, 38, told a Nairobi court that anti-narcotics
police implicated him in the crime last October.

He was travelling from India to Lagos, when the police arrested him at
Nairobi's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport and accused him of
carrying 9.6 kgs of heroin.

Led through his sworn defence by lawyer Kathambi Kinoti, the accused
told chief magistrate Aggrey Muchelule he had been sent to India by
village elders to get his uncle, Dr Francis Okechukwu. His grandmother
had died and could not be buried in her eldest son's absence.

He failed to convince his uncle to return home and boarded a flight
for Dubai, connecting to Nairobi, he said.

The suspect, who said he was a born-again Christian, claimed the
airport police arrested him and demanded that he relieve himself of
drugs concealed in his stomach.

He said they failed to find them but that, by that time, he had missed
the Lagos connection.

"They apologised for the delay and assured me I would travel the
following day," he said, and that the officers bought him food.

They later in the evening brought three boxes which they said were
discovered in his luggage and contained drugs.

But prosecutor Moses Odoyo said the accused was a seasoned drug
trafficker who had travelled to India to contact his business associates.

The passenger manifest indicated he was the owner of the luggage in
which the heroin was discovered.

Mr Odoyo said he doubted the suspect's claim that he had travelled to
India to get his uncle, saying he could have called him. Ms Kinoti
will make her closing submissions on September 27.
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