Suspect in Murder of Lira businessman turns state witness

LIRA.

One of the suspects in the murder of a Lira businessman has been turned into a State witness, after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) dropped charges against him. In a June 11 letter from the DPP, Mr Bernard Ayo, 24, an earlier suspect in the murder of his father and prominent businessman in Lira Town Tony Engola, was relieved of charges against him before the High Court. In the letter the DPP said the State had withdrawn interest in prosecuting Mr Ayo. Three suspects including Ayo had been brought for trial. The fourth died in custody.Engola was kidnapped on the night of February 23, 2012 as he returned home. His body was found in his vehicle at a broken bridge in Kicope, Ojwina Division in Lira Municipality.The body bore deep cuts around the jaws and had been stabbed several times on the neck and chest.Hearing of the case is before visiting Masindi Resident High Court Judge Simon Byabakama Mugenyi. After discharging him, Mr Ayo immediately changed to the witness box and implicated his former co-accused Mr Ojuka Joel and Mr Ogwal Naboth, of killing his father. Mr Ayo told court that the accused persons with others still at large kidnapped him and forced him to show them where his father was. He said the assailants tied him as they also waited for his father whom they grabbed as he opened to enter his vehicle at a hotel near home.Mr Ayo submitted that the assailants – about seven- drove him and his father around Lira Town before dumping him. He said the assailants stabbed his father with a knife and when he tried to intervene, they hurt him in the hand.He said after he was dumped, he walked home but two of the assailants still followed him and grabbed the blood-stained clothes he was wearing. He did not say whether he informed his mother about the incident, but said the following morning he reported to police and was detained as a suspect.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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