Indian Businessman’s Murder Case Transferred to Kabale over Threats to Witnesses

A case in which a police officer in Kisoro District is accused of shooting to death an Indian businessman has been transferred to Kabale High Court following threats to the witnesses.

Patel Kuntaj, 24 who operated a hardware shop in Kisoro municipality was shot on October 27, 2022, by Eliod Gumizamu attached to the Nyakabande Refugee Transit Centre.

Kuntaj later died at St. Francis Hospital in Mutolere due to excessive bleeding. Gumizamu reportedly appeared with a group of unidentified men and entered the hardware shop, pulled out a gun, and shot Kuntaj in the chest.

After the incident, Gumizamu reportedly put the gun in a sack and attempted to flee on a motorcycle, but was arrested by residents.

Gumizamu reportedly said that he had been hired by a businessman to kill Kuntaj for 20 million Shillings.

The police later arrested six suspects in connection to the murder.

They were Patel Hatel, a businessman and proprietor of Imperial Supermarket in Kisoro town, Godfrey Ntibakunze alias Kafeero, a Boda Boda rider, Bernard Nteziyaremye, a private security guard from Harvest Mountain security company, Gardiso Nyabangabo commonly known as Gardson, a resident of Gako village, Muramba Sub County, Charles Nteziryayo, a driver and Elioda Gumisiriza.

During the hearing of the case in Kisoro on Wednesday, Kabale High Court Judge, Justice Samuel Emokor said that he received a submission from the office of the Kisoro District State Prosecutor that three prosecution witnesses are receiving threats by yet-to-be-identified people.

Justice Emokor said that the case will proceed in the High Court in Kabale district since witnesses are not safe in Kisoro. Justice Emokor however declined to reveal the identities of the witnesses citing security reasons.

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