VANCOUVER – A government-sponsored refugee who was found guilty on four counts of first-degree murder has lost his appeal in British Columbia’s highest court.
Charles Kembo was found guilty in June 2010 in the deaths of his wife, girlfriend, step-daughter and business partner in separate incidents between December 2002 and 2005.
Kembo, who arrived from the African country of Malawi in 1989, appealed the convictions, and his lawyers argued that the trial judge made mistakes when instructing the jury about the relationships between the victims and the probability that the killings were the work of one person.
Kembo’s lawyers also argued that the judge blended evidence involving the deaths, admitted parts of a prejudicial police statement and referred to the document as a confession.
The unanimous decision by the panel of B.C. Appeal Court judges says the trial judge did not make any mistakes in describing the evidence or how jurors should use it.
The body of Kembo’s wife was never found, his business partner was found strangled and castrated in a Vancouver park, while his girlfriend’s body was found stuffed in a hockey bag and his step-daughter’s body was discovered wrapped in garbage bags and dumped in Richmond.