Ugandan police have claimed that gay rights campaigner David Kato was killed by a man he had arranged to pay for sex.

Mr Kato, who was recently outed by a newspaper, was beaten to death with a hammer at his home last week.

His fellow activists said they feared he had been killed in a homophobic attack and urged police to investigate his death fully.

Police first said he had been killed in a robbery but yesterday they claimed that he was attacked by a a man he knew.

Enock Nsubuga, who was described by police as a “well-known thief”, was arrested this week at his girlfriend’s house.

Police say that Mr Kato bailed Mr Nsubuga out of prison in late January and that the suspect had been staying at his house.

Inspector General Kale Kayihura, told reporters yesterday: “According to the suspect he negotiated with the deceased to be paid money as he was to be used as a sexual partner.”

He added that Mr Kato refused to pay the money after the pair had sex.

“The following day Nsubuga confesses that he picked a hammer from the bathroom and hit him on the head,” Kayihura claimed.

“There is nothing concrete to suggest that Nsubuga was motivated by hate, although we are not dismissing it.”

Mr Kato had received death threats after successfully suing a newspaper for publishing his name, address and photo in an anti-gay campaign.

He was buried last week, although his funeral was disrupted when the pastor began urging gays to repent.