A Mandera County employee has been ordered to give up to the state Sh61 million believed to have been acquired illegally.
Justice Mumbi Ngugi found that Abdi Mohamed Ali made the said money through fraudulent means and he ought to hand the money to the government.
Ali had been sued by the Asset Recovery Agency (ARA) alongside his spouse, Saadia Sheikh, after their bank activity caught the agency’s eye.
Ali who is a director of livestock production in the county and his wife, a housewife, said they made the money from selling honey and animals.
“The respondents have not been able to demonstrate that they have a legitimate source of funds. Such funds are not therefore not protected under the constitutional guarantee under Article 40. Their forfeiture to the State does not therefore violate the constitutionally guaranteed protection of property,” Justice Ngugi ruled.
The court also heard that Ali is the sole provider with 12 children and the same number of grandchildren. He also takes care of 10 children all of whom are in secondary school.
Ali had earlier told the court that he was diabetic and was battling cholesterol hence regular visits to the doctor. In spite of all his needs, he and Sheikh operate two accounts whose contents they do not touch.
“The said bank accounts received suspicious cash deposits in Kenya shillings and the funds are suspected to be stolen and/or fraudulently acquired from Mandera County by the respondents, their agents or representatives and deceitfully deposited in the said accounts,” ARA lawyer Jenifer Gitiri told the court.
Last year, Justice John Onyiego felt that Ali’s explanation did not satisfy the court that such a huge amount was from the sale of animals.
“It is not enough to say such and such account and the deposits were out of the sale of camels, the source of which is not known or supported. Anybody can imagine a figure and even business. The respondent’s (Ali) explanation given is quite casual and cosmetic, with no tangible evidence or proof of the existence of any business being undertaken by the first respondent,” ruled Justice Onyiego.
The amounts were deposited from different locations including Garissa, Mandera, Moyale, Eastleigh and Westlands.
ARA had been monitoring the 44 deposits since 2014 to February 2020, ranging between Ksh134,000 and Ksh2.1 million, and concluded that they were probably proceeds of graft.
Court filings show that Ali made deposits in a bank three or two times in a day.
Ali has never withdrawn money from one account at Equity Bank.