DPP TO DECIDE WHETHER TO PROCEED WITH TRIAL OF KEROCHE MINUS AILING HUSBAND.

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Keroche Breweries Ltd Tabitha Karanja with his husband Joseph Muigai/PHOTO BY S.A.N

BY SAM ALFAN.

A Nairobi court has granted the Director of Public Prosecution Nordin Haji time to decide whether to exclude the Keroche Industries chairman Joseph Muigai from a Sh14 billion tax evasion case.

Trial Magistrate Esther Kimeru said it was upon the DPP to decide whether to exclude Muigai from the trial, especially after the case was adjourned because the elderly man was hospitalized.

His lawyer James Orengo told the court that Muigai is admitted at the Karen Hospital and it was his view that he should be excused as the trial proceeded.

Muigai is charged alongside his wife Tabitha Mukami. The court directed the matter to be mentioned on June 14 for directions.

The couple is accused of unlawfully making incorrect statements of their excise duty returns between February 2015 and January 2016, which in turn reduced their company’s tax liability by Sh1.8 million.

They also face a second count of making incorrect excise tax for February 2016 and January 2017, amounting to Sh3.1 billion.

On the third count, they are accused of filing incorrect excise duty books to the tune of Sh3.6 billion, an offence they allegedly committed between February 2017 and January 2018.

The charges read that between 2018 and January 2019, another excise tax entry was unlawfully made which exposed the firm to a Sh2.5 billion liability.

Charges also consist of Sh1.9 billion excise tax which was allegedly to be paid between January and June 2019. They were also charged with omitting Value Added Tax (VAT) returns between 2016 and this year.

Prosecution told the court that between February 2016 and January 2017, Sh551 million was not remitted by the firm to the tax collector, and that between 2017 and 2018 , the amount was Sh613 million.

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