Sonko graft case: DPP ordered to number evidence

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What you need to know:

  • The governor faced 19 charges in two separate files, with the prosecution claiming that he conspired with business people and senior county government officials to embezzle more than Sh300 million from the county coffers.

The Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) was on Tuesday ordered to number over 10,000 copies of the evidence he intends to give in court in the graft case against Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko.

The chief magistrate at the anti-corruption court Douglas Ogoti directed the DPP to mark the 10,238 exhibits for ease of reference saying “they are jumbled up and cannot be followed.”

“Even the prosecutors themselves find difficulties in locating particular exhibits in the bundle of documents given to the court and the accused,” Mr Ogoti said.

The magistrate said its eight months since Mr Sonko was charged and the accused are still complaining that they find difficulties in following the evidence supplied by the DPP as they prepare their defences.

The magistrate was forced to intervene to calm both defence and prosecuting counsel who had engaged in a shouting match over the supply of the evidence.

Mr Ogoti gave the new directive after dismissing an application by the DPP to be allowed to prosecute an application which he had not served the twelve defence lawyers.

“If this court is inclined to allow the DPP to prosecute the application which he filed on June 24 and failed to serve us then grant us permission to apply for the termination of the case against Sonko and16 others for want of prosecution,” the lawyers argued.

The magistrate directed the case be mentioned for pre-trial on August 26 and directed the DPP give new set of evidence by August 20.

The governor faced 19 charges in two separate files, with the prosecution claiming that he conspired with business people and senior county government officials to embezzle more than Sh300 million from the county coffers.

The charges against him ranged from conspiracy to commit an offence of corruption, conflict of interest to money laundering and acquisition of proceeds of crime.

“Between May 24, 2018 and March 28, 2019 in Nairobi City County, being the governor, you jointly conspired with the co-accused to commit an offence of corruption namely embezzlement of public funds in the sum of Sh357,390,229 from Nairobi City County Government,” read the charge sheet.

In the second file, the governor alongside Fredrick Odhiambo, Web Tribe Ltd, Robert Muriithi, Zablon Onyango, ROG Security Ltd and Anthony Otieno were accused of embezzling Sh24.1 million through a contract for an electronic revenue collection and payment solutions.

Other accused charged alongside the governor are Mwaura, Njeri, Peter Mbugua, Patrick Mwangangi, Wambua Ndaka, Andrew Nyasiego, Samuel Mwangi, Edwin Kariuki, Lawrence Mwangi and Preston Mwandiki.

The accused are out on bond.

As the case was being mentioned, hundreds of Sonko's stood outside the Milimani Law Courts chanting slogans in support of the governor.

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