Tristan Voorspuy tried to reach out to pastoral herders before his murder

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Tristan Voorspuy
South African-born Mr Voorspuy was raised in Sussex and served for six years in the British Army. Photo: Offbeat Safaris

Nearly two weeks after British expat Tristan Voorspuy was murdered in Laikipia, more details are emerging of events leading up to his fatal shooting.

According to reports, Voorspuy was killed as he defied the wishes of his family and “ventured” out on horseback to visit a site on the Sosian ranch in Laikipia County which he co-owned, where two cottages had been set ablaze by the herders.

While there, he was attacked by heavily armed herders who had been illegally camped in the ranch grounds since January.

According to farm staff, his body was found with seven bullet wounds, which led to Kenyan Police Chief Joseph Boinett to say: “He was inhumanely shot dead,” pledging to “bring those responsible to book.”

In a News24 feature, speaking under condition of anonymity, ranch staff claim Voorspuy had previously tried in vain to reach out to the herders for talks to resolve the issue of their illegal stay in the expansive 24,000 acre farm.

“He tried to reach out to them but they were unco-operative. They only saw force as a means of getting their way,” a staff member said.

Before his murder, the former British army officer and other ranch owners had held talks with police bosses in the region to formulate a way forward over the invasions before they turned violent.

“We had met severally and he (Voorspuy) had sought to look for amicable ways to deal with the invaders,” Laikipia Police Commander Simon Kipkeu told News24.

Mr Voorspuy’s murder has been condemned by British High Commissioner Nic Hailey and the prime suspect in his killing appeared in court earlier this week.

It has also been revealed that Mr Voorspuy wrote predicting the rise in violence which ultimately cost him his life.

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