Controversial Malindi-based Pastor Paul Nthenge Mackenzie will remain in police custody for 30 more days beginning May 3, Shanzu Magistrate court has ruled.
The suspect, who is being held in connection with the deaths of more than 100 persons that allegedly starved to death in Shakahola forest, has been behind bars since his arrest last month.
The Office of the Director of Criminal Investigation (ODPP) had filed an application last week before Shanzu senior principal magistrate Yusuf Shikanda to continue holding Mackenzie and 17 others for 90 days.
According to the senior principal prosecution counsel Jami Yamina, the 14-day period that they had initially been granted by a Malindi court to hold Mackenzie and his co-accused, proved to be grossly insufficient because of the evolving nature of the case and the lines of inquiry that are being pursued.
He told the court that they need more time to conclude their investigation around Mackenzie and his members of the Good News International Church.
They are facing serious crimes of murder, counselling and aiding persons to kill themselves, aiding suicide, abduction, radicalisation, genocide, crimes against humanity, child cruelty, fraud and money laundering.