Society - East Africa - Ethiopia - United States - Justice - Crime
Ethiopian man, jailed over US diplomat’s murder, claims ’rape’
A 23-year-old man who was arraigned before the Ethiopian High Court, on homicide charges, has been sentenced to a 17-year prison term over the murder of an American diplomat in Addis Ababa.

The 25-year-old American diplomat, Brian Adkins was found dead in his Addis Ababa home in February this year. According to official sources, the U.S. diplomat’s corpse was covered in wounds when it was discovered.

The discovery, which suggested foul play at first sight, prompted the country’s Federal Police to embark on an intensive investigation and later an extensive search.

The 23-year-old Ethiopian suspect was arrested in a remote area of the country a week after a nationwide search launched.

During his trial, shortly after the arrest, the suspect defended himself claiming self defence. According to him, “The diplomat violently tried to rape me … that is what pushed me to react in self defence”.

His argument, however, did little to help his case. The victim’s numerous wounds, it is argued, suggests more than a simple case of self defence. The court on July 9 found him guilty on murder charges and sentenced him the next day to a 17 year prison term.

Brian Adkins was a Foreign Service officer who worked in the consular section of US embassy in Addis Ababa. A graduate of George Washington University in Washington, Ethiopia was his first foreign assignment for the State Department.


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