BY IRENE ONYANGO.
Former Nairobi County Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko and Kenya Revenue Authority chairman Anthony Mwaura have been acquitted of Sh357 graft charges.
The two and 17 were freed by Anti-Corruption chief magistrate Eunice Nyutu, a day after the High Court declined to overturn a ruling directing the prosecution to close its case.
In a judgement, the trial court ruled that the prosecution failed to adduce before the court was not sufficient to sustain the charges.
“In conclusion, I find that the prosecution has failed to establish a prima facie case against all the accused persons in all charges and I hereby acquit them pursuant to section 210 of the criminal procedure code,” ruled Nyutu.
Nyutu noted that despite the Court putting measures in ensuring that there is minimal adjournment during the trial, the prosecution constantly came up with reasons to postpone the proceedings.
The adjournments resulted in the eventual collapse of the case.
She added that the prosecutors in the case failed in their mandate of serving the people of Kenya by declining to proceed with the hearing.
This was after the court rejected an application to drop charges against Mwaura, his spouse and his firms from the case.
Sonko was charged in 2019 alongside the then County Secretary Peter Kariuki, Patrick Mwangangi, Wambua Ndaka, Andrew Nyasiego, Samwel Ndung’u among others.
They were accused of conspiracy to embezzle public funds amounting to Sh 357,390,230.
They also faced accusations of money laundering, abuse of office and unlawful acquisition of public funds.