The investigation into the whereabouts of the missing Dutch national Tob Cohen has been turned into a homicide case following indications he could have been abducted and killed.
Yesterday, Chief Magistrate Patricia Gichohi allowed Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) officers to detain Cohen’s wife Sarah Wairimu Kamotho for another twelve days pending completion of investigations.
Last week, the court allowed her to be detained for three days.
Consequently, police have now narrowed down the probe to possible murder grand scheme with the wife profiled as the principal suspect.
The latest development comes amid mounting pressure from the Embassy of Netherlands in Nairobi and persistent push by senior ranking business associates and golfers to detectives to ascertain his safety.
However, in Kenya, according to Section 118 (a) of the Evidence Act, one is presumed dead if he or she has been missing and has not had any contact with those they ought to have been in touch with after seven years and one day.
“Section 118A. Presumption of death. Where it is proved that a person has not been heard of for seven years by those who might be expected to have heard of him if he were alive, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that he is dead.” The Act reads in part.
Preliminary findings by investigators attached to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) has poked holes to what they termed as “contradictory” account by his 51 years old wife, workers and a trail of questionable documents believed to be a cover up.
So far, the investigation has pointed into a premeditated case of abduction either on his way home or inside his house.
Although Wairimu was arrested from their Kitusuru matrimonial home on Wednesday evening before being locked overnight at Muthaiga police cells, investigators are keen to seek for more time through a miscellaneous application in court to detain her for more interrogation.
Of interest, a team of DCI officers probing what is shaping up as one of the most convoluted criminal investigation, it has been discovered a new cctv security surveillance system was installed immediately after Cohen’s unexplained disappearance.
Detectives have also poked holes to assertions that Cohen left home using a cab since his private car is still parked at his home.
“We are following several possible leads and we are at an advanced stage. However, it is very clear he did not travel out of the country to Thailand as alleged. We have questioned a number of individuals regarded as persons of interest in this case.” A senior detective said.
The investigators are also relying on phone exploitation and phone records triangulation of all those questioned to establish if they were in close proximity moments before Cohen disappeared.
Further, authenticity of a letter allegedly written by Cohen to his lawyer claiming he has decided to forgive his wife over their troubled marriage of almost three decades has been put into question.
Besides being subjected to forensic investigations, the document examiner will also verify the signatures appended.
The missing Dutch businessman has been missing since July 20 and his fate and whereabouts remains a mystery.
His phones, passports and other personal traveling and identification documents have not been recovered.
Wairimu said she met Cohen in 1989 while working for Design Plus Ltd that was an advertising agent for Philips East Africa where Cohen was the Chief Executive Officer.
After quitting Philips, he formed ‘Tobs For Fun’ and asked her to join and later established their company, Tobs Limited.
Their marriage had hit rock-bottom and the disgruntled man complained of harassment and denial of his conjugal rights by his estranged wife.
They are also embroiled row over the control of the multimillion property in Kitusuru.