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CA OFFICIALS CHARGED WITH FAILING TO COMPLY WITH PROCUREMENT LAWS.

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Communication Authority of Kenya to officials before Milimani Anti-Corruption Court where they pleaded not guilty on Friday May 17,2019./PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Senior officials of Communication Authority have been charged with failing to comply with the law in the procurement laws.

The court heard that Joyce Nyambache, the head of procurement, Peris Nkonge, Stanley Kibe, John Omo, Leo Kibet, Muthusi Mutua, Vincent Ikovo, Jane Cheptanui and Philip Kipkemoi, failed to comply with the law while procuring services to renovate Nairobi ASK stand.

They pleaded not guilty to the charges when they appeared before Milimani Anti-Corruption Chief Magistrate Douglas Ogoti.

The charges stated that on September 22, 2014 in Nairobi, being public officers tender committee members and concerned with the management of public funds, jointly and willfully failed to comply procurement laws.

Nyambache was accused of failing to report direct procurement of value exceeding Sh500,000 within the stipulated time by Public Procurement Oversight Authority for the renovation of the Nairobi ASK show stand. She is further accused of failing to issue notice to all bidders as required by law.

The court issued summons to Nkonge, Muthosi and Omo who were not present in court. The court heard that Omo is secretary general African Telecommunications Union which enjoys diplomatic immunity.

Ogoti was told that he is currently out of the country and was not aware of the case because no summons had been issued to him.

As for Muthusi, the court was told that he works for International Telecommunications Union and is currently in Geneva.

The court directed that the deposit cash bail of Sh500,000 in court to secure their release or deposit bond of Sh1.5 million. They were also ordered to deposit their passport in court and those still working with CA to only return to their offices accompanied by the investigating officers.

By the time of this publication all accused had paid for cash bail and spotted by NairobiTimez leaving Milimani law court at 4 pm.

FLASHY BUSINESSMAN JARED OTIENO TO BE DETAINED FOR 7 DAYS.

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Flamboyant businessman Jared Kiasa Otieno.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Flamboyant businessman Jared Kiasa Otieno will been detained for seven days at Kileleshwa Police Station to allow police to complete investigations into alleged gold scam.

Senior Resident Magistrate Paul Mayova ruled that seven days were sufficient for police to complete investigations.

According to the police affidavit, investigations into a case of obtaining money by false pretences is ongoing.

The court heard that between 8th and 25th February 2019 a foreigner by the name Sounthorn Chanthavong from Lao, who deals in buying and selling of gold is alleged to have been lured into a house No.12 at Kaputei Gardens in Nairobi where he lost three Million dollars after being dubbed that the items he bought were genuine gold.

Two weeks ago, police raided the said house allegedly owned by Otieno and arrested 15 people in connection with the fraud. They were produced before a Nairobi Court and court allowed the police to detain them.

According to the police, Otieno is linked to many more fraudulent activities involving fake gold adding that there are many more complainants who have come up with similar allegations.

The investigations are alleged to be complex, diverse and are looking at transnational organized crime where some of his accomplices could be in the neighbouring countries and the offences committed cuts across international borders.

However, through his four lawyers, led by Stanley Kangahi said the 14 days are in excess since no holding charge has been preferred against him. “Investigations is a continuous processes and even if they were granted 14 days I doubt if the investigations would stop,” Kangahi said.

He further submitted that the affidavit does not state any other complainants as alleged by the prosecution.

“Fourteen days are in excess as there is no exercise that the police intend to require the presence of the respondents,” the lawyer said.

COURT STOPS TARDA AND POSTAL BOARD MEMBERS FROM ASSUMING OFFICE OVER ETHNIC COMPOSITION.

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High Court Judge John Mativo who has issued restraining appointed board members from assuming office.

BY NT CORRESPONDENT.

The High Court has prohibited appointed board members of Postal Corporation of Kenya and Tana and Athi Rivers Development Agency (TARDA) from assuming office.

Justice John Mativo issued the orders after Chama Cha Mawakili filed an application challenging the appointment of the board members appointed by President Uhuru Kenyatta for lack of ethnic balance.

“Pending the hearing and determination of the notice of motion a conservatory order be and is hereby issued prohibiting the interested parties from assuming the offices for which they have been appointed by the respondents in terms of the gazette notices Number 4334 and 4359 dated May 3,2019”,. Ordered Mativo.

In a petition, Chama Cha Mawakili claim that the appointment of Mike Rubia, Fred Gachie, Munyua Waiyaki, Simon Kiuta, Pauline Muthangani, James Muriithi, Jane Githinji, Ndogo Waweru, Robert Murimito the board of the PCK and TARDA does not meet the constitutional requirement of ethnic and regional balance. The organisation wants the appointments quashed.

“Regional and ethnic balance is a constitutional edict that runs through the entire constitution and therefore the composition of all national or public institutions at all levels should reflect the regional and ethnic diversity of the people of Kenya,” reads court papers.

They want the court to declare the appointments as unlawful and unconstitutional for failure to comply with the requirement. The petitioners also want the court to quash the gazette notices made on May 3, containing the appointments as it is a violation of the constitution.

In the documents, the petitioners argued that state corporations are currently dominated by the big communities and a priority should be given to other small communities in order to bring about true ethnic and regional balance in all state corporations.

“There is no justifiable reason to continue favoring big communities during appointments to state corporations. It is imperative that regional and ethnic balance be achieved in all state corporations without delay,” the petition stated.

DARING MAN WHO STOLE SH6 MILLION AND WAS ARRESTED AS HE WENT FOR MORE.

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Feisal Muhamud Ndungu alias Said Awako Sharif before Milimani Magistrate Court on Wednesday May 15,2019./PHOTO BY S.A.N.
BY NT CORRESPONDENT.

A man has been charged with stealing over Sh6 million from Gulf Africa Bank, Eastleigh Branch in Nairobi.

Feisal Muhamud Ndungu alias Said Awako Sharif is accused of stealing Sh 6,519,000 between May 2 and 13, this year.

Further, Feisal was charged with attempting to steal Sh800,000 from the said bank on May 14.

The accused persons also denied a charged impersonation. The court heard that on May 14, with intent to defraud, he falsely presented himself as Said Awako Sharif to Farah Abdi Hirsi, a teller at the said Bank.

He denied the charges before Chief Magistrate Martha Mutuku and was granted a bond of Sh2 million and one surety or a cash bail of Sh1 million.

The matter will be mentioned on May 29.

TWO DENY OBTAINING SH 3 M FROM FRENCH BUSINESSMAN IN GOLD SCAM.

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Mohammed Akabar Rashi alias Amit Gathi and Yulian Stankov pentrov alias Vikta Rosta( Brungarian national) before Milimani Magistrate Court where the denied fraud charges on Tuesday May 14,2019./PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY NT CORRESPONDENT.

Two businessmen have been charged before a Nairobi court with obtaining Sh 3 million from a French businessman pretending to sell him 10kg of gold.

Mohammed Akabar Rashi alias Amit Gathi and Yulian Stankov pentrov alias Vikta Rosta( Brungarian national) denied the fraud charges before Senior Resident Magistrate Muthoni Nzibe.

They are accused that on diverse dates between February 27 and April 2019 jointly with others not before court with intent to defraud obtained USD 308,50 equivalent to Ksh 3 million from french businessman Laxmin Naria Jindal by falsely pretending they were in position to sell him 10 kg of gold.

Petrov is accused of being unlawfully in Kenya.

Akabar Rashi alone was released on a cash bail of Sh 100,000 or Sh 500,000 bond pending hearing and determination of the fraud trial.

However, the court ordered Brungarian national Pretrov to be remanded in custody pending the hearing of his case.

This is after prosecution opposed his release on bond terms saying he is a foreigner and have no known residents in the country.

Prosecution further added he was facing another criminal case before Malindi Law Court but the accused said he was acquitted and his passport is still detailed by Malindi court.

MAJORITY OF LATE MINISTER KOINANGE FAMILY WANTS WANJIKU TO RETURN 88 ACRES OF LAND.

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Some of three family members of the late cabinet minister Mbiyu Koinange before Justice Aggrey Muchelule during the hearing of application seeking Lennah Wanjiku to return about 88 acres of land she currently occupies which she took before the distribution of the estate on Monday May 13,2019./PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY SAM ALFAN.

The high court will rule on June 26 on whether to order late cabinet minister Mbiyu Koinange daughter Lennah Wanjiku to return about 88 acres of land.

This is after majority of the family members of the late cabinet minister urged the High Court to order one of his daughters Lennah Wanjiku to return about 88 acres of land she currently occupies which she took before the distribution of the estate.

Appearing before Justice Aggrey Muchelule, Eddah Wanjiru Mbiyu through Senior Counsel Paul Muite said she transferred the parcel of land to herself without the consent of other beneficiaries.

Muite also informed the court that Wanjiku has on two other occasions transferred and registered other properties in her favour.

He said the transactions were neither sanctioned by the other three administrators or beneficiaries.

Muite added that the said entries should be cancelled and the land reverted back to the estate as the said transfers constitute of intermeddling.

The application was supported by other administrators including David Njunu Koinange, David Waiganjo Koinange and Margaret Njeri as well as other beneficiaries of the estate.

The lawyer further informed the trial judge that some three other properties were sold through sanctions of the court and there was no contention as all beneficiaries agreed.

They include 260 acres sold to Aga Khan, 100 acres to Centum and a three-acre parcel sold to Karura Community Chapel.

Muite said that the land Wanjiku transferred to herself was not sanctioned by the court, hence it should be cancelled.

However, Wanjiku told the court that Margaret has not come to court “with clean hands” and the application was only meant to delay the distribution of the estate.

Wanjiku through his lawyer said she has been occupying the disputed land since she was evicted from the portion that was sold to other parties, through consent of the court.

The lawyer further added that his client was aware of authorised excisions by other beneficiaries but they were only interested in her parcel, after developing it from a thicket and currently rears dairy cattle among other developments.

TORNADO DIRECTORS IN COURT OVER SH 109 MILLION CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD.

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Tornado Carriers Limited directors Shakil Ahmed Khan and Nazir Ahmed Matabkhan before Milimani Anti-Corruption Court where they denied conspired to to commit corruption through fraudulent payment of over sh109 million./PHOTO BY S.A.N.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Two directors of Tornado Carriers Limited have been released on a cash bail of 7 million pending hearing and determination of their corruption case.

Shakil Ahmed Khan and and Nazir Ahmed Matabkhan pleaded not guilty before Milimani Anti-Corruption Court Chief Magistrate Lawrence Mugambi.

Magistrate dismissed their application seeking to differ the plea to await decision by Mombasa High Court. In his ruling Mugambi said there was no compelling reason submitted or stay from the Mombasa Court to warrant plea to be differed. “Actually it’s the Mombasa that ordered the accused to appear before me for plea taking”, Mugambi added.

They are accused between January 11, 2017 and December 5,2017 jointly with National Land Commission Chairman Mohammad Swazuri and other officials to commit corruption through fraudulent payment of Kshs. 109,769,363.00 for purported compulsory acquisition of land reference MN/VI/3801 from Tornado Carriers Limited for the Kenya National Highways Authority.

Prosecution further accused Nazir , Shakil and Tornado of jointly , knowingly and fraudulently acquiring public property of Shs. 55,269,363 belonging to the KNHA from the account of the National Lands Commission as purported compulsory acquisition of land for the Mombasa port area road development while knowing that the said property was charged.

Court directed the two to be detained at EACC police station to allow processing.

On April 1, high court issued orders freezing bank accounts belonging two directors and their company for a period of six months pending investigations into allegations over alleged illicit payment of over 106 million made by National Land Commission for compensation for acquisitions of land for expansion of Mombasa southern bypass Kipevu road.

Justice Mumbi Ngugi of High Court Anti-Corruption Division issued orders after Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission filed application under certificate of urgency seeking to prohibit the three namely Asia Akhtar Nazir Ahmed, Tarah Begum Khan and Tornado Carriers Limited, from withdrawing or dealing with said money held At NIC Bank.

“A preservation order is hereby issued prohibiting the respondents (Tornado Carriers Limited, Asia Akhtar Nazir Ahmed and Tarah Begum Khan) jointly and severally, their agents, servants or any other persons from withdrawing , transferring, disposing or in any other way dealing with the funds held in the bank accounts at NIC Bank in the name of Asia Akhtar Nazir Ahmed and in the name of Tarah Begun Khan “, ordered Justice Ngugi.

The learned judge further directed that the said orders shall subsist for a period of six months. She also n certified urgent the application and the commission was ordered to serve the parties.

The orders were issued after the commission filed an application seeking to prohibit the three from withdrawing or dealing with said money pending investigations into allegations of corruption and economic crimes over alleged illicit payment made by National Land Commission in return to facilitate irregular compensation for acquisitions of land for expansion of roads and construction of by- pass on behalf of the Kenya National Highways Authority (KENHA).

According to documents filed in court, preliminary investigations have established that the National Land Commission compulsorily acquired LR. NO MN/VI/3801 and made an award for Sh 109, 769, 363 in favour of the registered owner, M/s Tornado Carriers Limited.

The said award of Sh 109,769,363 was paid in two bank accounts. Tornado Carriers Limited received Sh 55,269,363 in its SBM Bank account while the reminder Sh 54,500,000 was paid to C.W. Chege Advocates and subsequently , the amount deposited in Tornado Carriers Limited account which was later moved to two accounts at NIC Bank in the name of Asia Akhtar Nazir Ahmed at NIC Bank in the name of Tarah Begum Khan.

EACC claims that the amount deposited in C.W Chege Advocates account was distributed or disbursed to officials of the National Land Commission.

The commission has established that the officials of the NLC that are in receipt of the funds disbursed from C.W. Chege Advocates account are, Sh 900,000 to Director valuation and Taxation NLC Salome Ludenyi Munubi, Sh 7 million to Deputy Director, valuation and Taxation NLC , another Sh 7 million to Ag. Director Finance Bernard Cherutich and Sh 3,020,000 to Secretary valuation and Taxation directorate Lilian Keverenge.

“There is reasonable suspicion , in view of the kickbacks to the officials of NLC that the award of 109,769,363 million was vastly inflated and the commission is in pursuit to unearth the circumstances surrounding the award.

The commission said that the preliminary investigations have established that the LR. No. MN/VI/3801, subject matter of the acquisition was vide a charge dated June 30,2005 to Imperial Bank Limited for Sh 9,500,000 and therefore the bank by virtue of section 107(7) of the Land Axt ,2012 has an interest over the parcel of land.

It was further established that the said land has been consolidated with another parcels LR.No. MN/VI+/2364 all belonging to Tornado Carriers Limited and used as security for several financing facilities from Imperial Bank.

” It is established that as at December 31,2018, Tornado Carriers Limited is indebted to the bank to the tune of 137,271828.71,” reads the court documents.

“Preliminary investigations have established that NLC abdicated its duty under section 112 of the Land Act ,2012 to serve a copy of notice of enquiry upon Imperial Bank inviting to present its claim over the subject parcel of land,” said EACC.

The commission on behalf of KENHA acquired the parcel of land that is encumbered thereby exposing the Government to grave risk of loss of public funds and in the likely event there is default, the government will be forced to offset the loab facilities or incur costs as a result of litigation in securing an unencumbered title.

Investigations by the commission has established that the Sh 109,769,363 was paid out by the NLC without securing an unencumbered title thereby putting the government at risk of substantial loss.

It has been established that half of the amount was paid back as kickbacks to the NLC officials thereby occasioning loss of public funds.

EACC says that it is apprehensive that respondents in the light of ongoing investigations may in the interfere, withdraw, transfer, dispose or any other deal with the funds in the aforesaid accounts to defeat the course of justice before the commission has complete its investigations and commence recovery proceedings.

In supporting affidavit by the agency investigating officer Catherine Ngari said NLC failed to carry out an official search at the land’s registry to ascertain the current status of the LR.No. MN/VI/3801 and if it carried the search, it blatantly neglected to safeguard the public interest by ensuring that there is discharge of the encumbrance on the subject parcel to secure a good title for KENHA.

FORMER KE-RINSURANCE BOSSES SENTENCED TO THREE YEARS IN JAIL.

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Former Kenya Reinsurance Corporation financial controller Faustin Kinyua and an ex-reinsurance manager Charles Gichane before Milimani Anti-Corruption Court after they were sentence to serve three years in jail./PHOTO BY S.A.N. 

BY SAM ALFAN.

Former Kenya Reinsurance Corporation financial controller Faustin Kinyua and an ex-reinsurance manager Charles Gichane have been fined Sh7.3 million each failure to which they will serve three years in jail.

Kinyua was found guilty of abuse of office when he allocated and transferred a house belonging to the corporation situated in Villa Franca Estate in Nairobi to Gichane, who was accused of acquiring the property fraudulently.

“This was a well-chereographed fraudulent scheme that was executed with the complicity of insiders sitting right inside Kenya Re-Insurance corporation limited where the first accused the facilitator in chief,” chief magistrate Lawrence Mugambi said.

“In view of the findings above, I do find that the prosecution has succeeded in proving count 1 relating to abuse of office against the first accused and further fraudulent acquisition of public property on second count, beyond reasonable doubt,” ruled Magistrate Mugambi.

He added that Kinyua had a hand in that scheme, given the manner in which he handled the cheque after receiving it.

“To allow a cheque meant to clear debts owed to Kenya Re-Insurance to be used to purportedly pay for the purchase price of property belonging to Kenya Re-Insurance corporation to such individual is double blow to Kenya Re and gross abuse of office by the first accused person,” he said.

The court further ordered the house at Villa Franca Estate be reverted to Kenya Reinsurance.

In their mitigation, Kinyua said that he has health issues which has seen him in and out of the hospital adding that he has a daughter studying in the UK and her education might suffer should he be incarcerated.

Gichane asked the court to consider his plea arguing that he is an elderly man of 68 years and has five grandchildren under his care.

In 2014 the two were charged afresh after the High Court ordered that the fresh trial after ruling that the earlier case was defective.

They committed the offence on diverse dates between August 19 and 27, 2003.

DCI WANTS 38 KRA OFFICIALS DETAINED AS HE PROBES TAX EVASION CLAIMS.

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Director of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti.

BY SAM ALFAN.

Director of Criminal Investigation George Kinoti have filed an application seeking to detain 38 Kenya Revenue officials arrested on Friday for 21 days to complete investigations in alleged tax evasion.

In affidavit by Inspector Arthur Onyango, Kinoti says that investigations are not complete and he need the three weeks to enable them complete comprehensive investigations into the case.

“A team of investigators require to ensure that all digital footprints of all the respondents and associates who were at large and it is important to be detained to enable detailed criminal inquiries or investigations to be carried out”, says Onyango.

The police further wants the officials detained by DCI Investigations Bureau custody for a period of 21 days in appropriate police station within Nairobi.

The officer says that the suspects were arrested on May 10, 2019 at Kenya Revenue Authority domestic taxes Department and customs border control department l

Through senior assistant director of public prosecution Duncan Ondimu the police said during the arrest , their respective Mobile phones , laptops and other electronic gadgets and equipment in their possession were seized and are yet yet to be subjected for forensic examination and reports obtained.

According to court papers, the DCI boss opened a inquiry No. 102 of 2019 in relation to commission of criminal offences being committed by the KRA staff and a number of tax payers.

Among those DCI wants to detain are two assistant manager Salome Atieno Rambo and Grace Katumbi Muinde,supervisors Grace Achieng Okuku , Augustine Saka Were, Margaret Jepkoskei Sangoi , Christopher Onondi among others.

A team of investigators have so far obtained court order to obtain subscriber details ,line history , IMEI history, text messages and call data records for the period of July 1,2017 to May 9,2019.

Among offences that DCI is investigating include money laundering, tax evasion, abuse of office,neglect of duty among others.

The detective told the court that investigation are complex and requires analysis in respect to over one hundreds and seventy eight Mobile phone numbers and Mpesa statements of the suspects.

“The evidence so far gathered and credible intelligence so far received show that the respondents were actively involved and colluded with certain taxpayers in a criminal enterprise to evade payment of taxes and reduce liability”, said investigative officer.

He further said 48 associate of the respondents are still at large and are being pursued by security services.

TRIO IN TATU CITY FIGHT NOT OFF-HOOK YET.

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Tatu City pioneer partners Stephen Mbugua Mwagiru and Rosemary Wanja Mwagiru before a Nairobi Court/FILE PHOTO

BY SAM ALFAN.

The owners of the Sh 240billion Tatu City project have succeeded in reviving an eight year old criminal case against pioneer partners Stephen Mbugua Mwagiru and his mother Rosemary Wanja Mwagiru.

The mother company, Tatu City Ltd and its main subsidiary Kofinaf Company Ltd, convinced the Court of Appeal judges that High Court Judge Mumbi Ngugi should not have blocked the prosecution of the Mwagirus and lawyer Robert Githu for forgery and presenting false documents.

They had been charged before the Chief Magistrate court in Nairobi with the offence of forgery contrary to section 349 of the Penal Code.

They were accused that on June 11 2010 within Nairobi City centre jointly with others not before the court, they forged a certain document CR 12C 1135765 Registrar of Company report dated June 10, 2010 purporting to be a genuine document issued by the Assistant Registrar of Companies Wilson Gikonyo.

Appellate Judges Wanjiru Karanja, Patrick Kiage and Fatuma Sichale ruled that Justice Ngugi “was plainly wrong” and “committed a reversible error of law” when she shielded the trio from facing justice.

“The decision of the High Court is set aside and substituted by an order dismissing the petition with costs”, the judges ruled.

In their 31 page judgment, The learned judges said that the stoppage or truncation of criminal charges, cases, investigations and processes must issue only in exceptional circumstances, and not willy-nilly so long as an accused person complains, notwithstanding that he has not demonstrated the abuse of process or oppression complained of with satisfactory evidence.

They said it was against public interest and offensive to the criminal justice system for accused persons to seek protection without demonstrating compelling reasons to justify exemption from prosecution.

But Justice Ngugi stopped the trial in 2013 saying the trio’s prosecution was not an honest enforcement of law and an order of prohibition was sufficient to stop the blatant abuse of the court process.

The court, she said, could not entertain “a galloping litigant” who was ready to use the criminal justice system to pursue a purely commercial dispute, she said.

The two firms, represented by Senior Counsel Ahmednassir Abdullahi, were aggrieved by Justice Ngugi’s decision delivered on November 12, 2013 stopping the two-count indictment against the three on the basis that it amounted to an abuse of the court process.

The trio was alleged to have forged a report by Assistant Registrar of Companies, Wilson Gikonyo, on June 11, 2010 that was used to register caveats on nine prime properties belonging to the firms. The Mwagirus had claimed to have been the sole shareholders and directors of Tatu City Ltd, which was previously known as Waguthu Holdings (K) Ltd, and applied to block any transactions on the land.

Ahmednassir had argued there were no valid reasons and justification to terminate the criminal case, which was instituted on December 6, 2010 since Justice Mumbi did not exonerate the accused persons from criminal liability regarding the contentious Companies Registry form used to register the blockade. The caveats were eventually removed administratively although the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is at liberty to re-open the cases, he said.

SC Ahmednassir recalled that Justice Fred Ochieng had dismissed an application by the three persons for conservatory orders on October 24, 2011 for lack of sufficient evidence to demonstrate that the DPP or the police were acting under the influence of interested parties in filing the criminal case.

The Mwagirus ceased to be directors of Waguthu Holdings (now Tatu City Ltd) from March 4, 2009 and transferred all their shares, except one, to Cedar IV Ltd. Similarly, they resigned as Tatu City board members.

Lawyer Kamau Kuria had protested that the criminal case was meant to coerce and intimidate the Mwagirus to withdraw two commercial disputes in which they were seeking the winding up of the companies. The DPP was working in cahoots with foreign investors to exert illegal pressure on the Mwagirus to remove the caveats, he had claimed.

He maintained that the two companies had no right of appeal after the DPP had chosen to drop the case following the court’s intervention. “This is an academic exercise.

“The DPP works independently and has not filed an appeal,” he had said.