National Youth Service loot spent on vehicles, court told
Suspects in the Sh791 million National Youth Service (NYS) scandal splashed part of the loot on buying luxury cars and houses in leafy suburbs of Nairobi, it emerged yesterday.
The prosecution told a Nairobi court how the suspects went on a shopping spree for top-of-the-range cars that included Range Rover, Jeep Cherokee, Toyota Prado and Toyota Land Cruiser.
The prime suspects in the case, Josephine Kabura, Ben Gethi and nine others also bought plots and houses in Roselyn Estate, Clay City House Property, Ruiru, Juja East, Muthaiga North, Mercury House along Moi Avenue, Juja Farm and a plot in Thika using the NYS cash.
All these properties, the prosecution said, were concealed under pseudo company names.
The fresh revelations were made when Kabura, Gethi and nine others were preferred with fresh charges that included laundering over Sh791 million from NYS.
The eleven denied the charges before Milimani Chief Magistrate Martha Mutuku after the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji was allowed to amend earlier charges.
In the new charge sheet, the prosecution amended the amounts, dates and added one new count against the accused.
Kabura and Gethi are now charged alongside city lawyer Patrick Onyango Ogolla, John Kago, Samuel Wachenje, Anthony Gethii Kihara, Benson Gachoka, John Hope Vandamme, Martin Gachara Wanjohi, Charty Wangu and Jedidah Gethi.
All the eleven have pleaded not guilty to 16 counts relating to the transactions, which the prosecution says, involved the stolen funds.
The accused are alleged to have committed the offences between December 2014 and April 2015.
The eleven are accused of colluding to wire the amount from NYS coffers and using part of it to purchase property through phony companies.
Kabura, Gethi, Kago and Ogolla are accused of arranging to purchase a Range Rover Reg No KCB 750Z worth Sh23.4 million with the proceeds of crime between December 22, 2014 and August 7, 2015.
Kabura and Kago denied they bought a car worth Sh6.3 million using the stolen NYS money. In another count the prosecution said Samuel Mudanyi Wachenje alias Sam Mwadime engaged in the purchase of a Toyota Prado KCE 874R worth Sh5.2 million with part of the money stolen from NYS.
Kago, Kihara and Kinuthia also allegedly purchased a Toyota Land Cruiser worth Sh5.2 million using the same money.
The eleven were first charged in 2016.
The magistrate ordered they remain on their earlier cash bails of Sh300,000 or an alternative bond of Sh1 million each.
The case was listed for hearing on September 10, 13 and 19.