BY SAM ALFAN.
A Nairobi Court has ordered a Kenyan fugitive wanted over claims of laundering involving more than Sh120 million to remain in custody until hearing and determination of his extradition application.
Milimani chief Magistrate Wendy Kagendo ruled that prosecution has tabled compelling reasons to warrant the court to show that Abdulrahman Imraan Juma, should be denied bail.
In the decision, the magistrate rejected a probation report tabled before her, saying it was one-sided. According to the report, the suspect is a school dropout, operating a consultant business and has a family that depends on him.
“The offence the suspect is facing is serious which needs an extradition application to be dealt with first before making other orders,” said the magistrate.
Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji has filed an application seeking to extradite Imraan to the USA.
But the suspect sought to be released on bail pending the hearing of the extradition application, a bid opposed by the DPP arguing that he is a flight risk.
His lawyer Kiraithe Wandungi said Imraan was ready to comply with all conditions given to him by the court.
Imraan has been detained at Gigiri Police station since December 15, 2021 after he was arrested by detectives from DCI headquarters, Kiambu Road.
He is alleged to be part of an international gang that conspires to commit wire fraud, money laundering and aggravated identity theft by targeting unsuspecting businessmen who are in need of loan facilities.
The DPP, is seeking to be allowed to extradite him to face the charges as requested by the US Department of Justice.
“We are signifying to the court that a requisition for Juma’s extradition and surrender has been made and requires the court to issue a warrant for apprehension and extradition of the fugitive who is accused in the United States District Court for the Central District of California,” said the DPP.
According to documents filed in court by the DPP, Juma is alleged to be part of an international syndicate that involves accomplices in the US, Nigeria and Kenyan law firm.
In the charges against Juma filed at the US District Court for the Central District of California, he is facing 61 counts of money laundering, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.
The documents alleged that Juma’s accomplices would identify businessmen based in the US and Qatar and hoodwink them that they could offer loans worth millions of shillings.
Once the victim was identified, the accomplices would introduce them to Juma who would in turn falsely claim that he would provide the loan through his company in Kenya.
She rejected bail application by Juma and ordered the case to be heard on Friday.