The High Court has given the Assets and Recovery Authority (ARA) a green light to freeze another Ksh49 million a Belgian man had sent to a sister of his lover as a money-laundering probe against the suspects intensifies.
This now brings to Ksh264 million the total amount of money frozen in the recent weeks until investigations are carried out to establish the source of the money.
The Ksh49 million was frozen last week. It was in two Equity Bank accounts owned by Jane Wangui Kago. One held Ksh3.1 million and the other 355,990 euros (Ksh45.6 million).
Detectives said they had established that Wangui is the sister of Tebby Wambui Kago, whose Ksh108 million from Belgian Marc De Mesel was also frozen last month.
The money believed to be proceeds of crime was sent by Marc De Mesel, a Belgian cryptocurrency expert who has been on the headlines recently over the huge sums of money sent to young Kenyan women.
Wangui told investigators that Mesel was Wambui’s boyfriend, adding a fresh twist to the cash-freeze case given the man was said to be the lover of Felista Nyamathira Njoroge who also recently had over Ksh100 million sent to her frozen on similar grounds.
Wangui claimed the Ksh49 million was a “gift” meant to boost her salon and clothes business in Ruiru. She said she opened the Euro account in July for purpose of receiving the funds from Mesel.
Njoroge had also told the court that the money she received from the Belgian national was a gift.
In an affidavit, Mesel stated that the college student was free to use the money however she pleases.
“That I hereby admit that the donee will be full and absolute legal owner of the gifted money and even though I hope that she builds financial security for herself and our future children, she will be free to use the said gifted amount as per her own will,” he swore.
ARA investigators believe the women are part of a complex money-laundering ring.
“The respondent (Ms Wangui) is suspected to be part of a syndicate involved in a complex money-laundering scheme involving a foreign national Marc De Mesel who is suspected to be the kingpin of the money laundering scheme,” the agency told the court.