Rashid Echesa arrested for alleged role in extortion ring targeting Governor Barasa

Rashid Echesa.

Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Mr Echesa was arrested and initially taken to Muthaiga Police Station.
  • The former CS is currently battling a Sh39 million fake arms deal case.

Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa has been arrested for his alleged role in an extortion ring targeting Kakamega Governor Fernandes Barasa.

According to Echesa’s lawyer, Danstan Omari, his client, who is also the chairperson of the Kenya Water Towers Agency, was arrested and initially taken to Muthaiga Police Station over charges of extortion and stage-managing an abduction. 

Mr Omari did not divulge more details regarding the matter.  

The arrest comes barely a week after a man was been charged before a Kibera court with extorting Sh240 million from Kakamega governor Fernandes Barasa.

Mr William Simiyu Matere alias Elijah was presented before Kibera Senior Pprincipal magistrate Ann Mwangi. The accused denied the two counts of conspiracy to commit a felony.

The charge sheet stated that Mr Matere, jointly with others not before court, conspired to commit a felony, an offence they allegedly committed on diverse dates between December 2023 and March 18, 2024.

The court was informed that the accused person and his accomplices demanded with menaces and extorted from Mr Barasa a sum of Sh240 million.

The accused was freed after depositing a bond of Sh2 million with a surety of the same amount.

Mr Echesa is currently battling a Sh39 million fake arms deal case before a Nairobi court and has twice failed to appear before the trial magistrate allegedly because he has been unwell.

The former CS was acquitted in December 2021 after the trial court ruled that the prosecution had failed to prove the charges against him and others, only for the High Court to overturn the decision.

Mr Echesa was charged alongside Mr Daniel Otieno Omondi alias General Juma, Clifford Okoth Onyango alias Paul and Kennedy Oyoo Mboya and Crispin Oduor Opiyo.

The trial court acquitted Mr Echesa on December 3, 2021 and others but placed Mr Opiyo on his defence after ruling that the prosecution had established a case against him.

The Director of Public Prosecutions appealed against the acquittal and High Court judge Kanyi Kimondo overturned the decision and directed the accused persons to appear before the magistrate for defence hearing.

“From my analysis of that further evidence, I find that the Republic had established a prima facie case against the 1st to 5th respondents for the main charge of conspiracy to commit a felony,” said the judge.

Justice Kimondo also said the prosecution had established a case against all the accused persons on the charge of making a document without authority.

The trial court was informed that Mr Echesa visited the office of the Deputy President on February 13, 2020 saying he had an appointment with then DP William Ruto.