A lawyer who was facing charges at the International Criminal Court in a case relating to Kenya’s newly elected president was found dead.
Paul Gicheru had pleaded guilty to eight counts for interfering with witnesses in a case against William Ruto in February. He was also charged with violence following the 2007 elections that resulted in 1,200 deaths.
Mr Ruto, , who was elected president earlier in the month denied the allegations. The ICC dropped the case in 2016 after claims of political interference.
Among others, Uhuru Kenyatta was also accused. At the time, Mr Ruto served as deputy president and was in office from 2013 to this year’s elections.
The court at The Hague allowed for new charges to be brought in the future. Judges were weighing their verdicts in Gicheru’s case.
His family discovered him unconscious at their home Monday night. He was “lying on his back, clean, casually attired” and had no trace of saliva or blood on any body openings.
The Associated Press obtained a police report that noted the lawyer’s health issues, including his “known diabetes and high blood pressure” status.
“He wasn’t himself”
It was not immediately clear what caused Gicheru’s sudden death.
John Khaminwa, a family lawyer, said that relatives had described him as stressed during the hours preceding.
“He wasn’t himself,” Mr Khaminwa stated.
Kenya Human Rights Commission stated that it was “concerned by the shocking news about the untimely deaths” and called for an investigation.
Fadi El Abdallah, spokesperson for the ICC, stated that “If there are any information regarding the death of an accuse, a confirmation should be submitted (trial chamber) and then the chamber will issue a decision ending this case.”
A hearing was not scheduled to render a decision in this case.