The case against the Amina Shiraz Yakub – the widow of the late Mombasa tycoon Jimmy Jagatram Baburam took a dramatic turn on Monday, October 14.
This was after Emmanuel Wafula, a state witness identified as a nightguard who worked at the Medina Palms in Watamu on the night of the murder gave a damning testimony.
Speaking before High Court Judge Dorah Chepkwony, Wafula claimed to have seen Yakub and her lover – Jacob Schmalzle, drowning the former KDF arms supplier in the swimming pool at around 4 a.m.
He went on to claim that Schmalzle sustained a serious injury above his eye, as the tycoon fought for his life.
The state prosecutor told the court that Babutram’s widow had conspired with her lover to commit the crime after her husband confronted them over the affair and vowed to disinherit her.
Schmalzle is reported to have fled to the US after an arrest warrant was issued against him.
However, Yakub’s lawyer, Ahmenassir Abdullahi rubbished the entire statement, going on to claim that the witnesses were coached by Baburam’s father, David Baburam, who he accused of eyeing his sons’ multi-million empire.
He said in two previous statements to the police, Wafula had denied witnessing Jagatram’s murder.
“This is a witness who is not just contradicting evidence, but manufacturing it,” Ahmednassir stated.
Yakub’s lawyer went on to allege that Baburam’s father (an ex-KDF soldier) was obsessed with his son’s Ksh500 million estate.
“He was maliciously obsessed with inheriting his son’s wealth. He hired witnesses in his effort to lead the prosecution. Were it not for his effort, role and drive, the case wouldn’t have been prosecuted,” the defence lawyer told the court.
Justice Chepkwony released Yakub on a Ksh10 million bond with two sureties.