Court temporarily halts Kosgey’s graft case

November 17, 2011 3:14 pm

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 17 – The High Court has stopped the ongoing trial of former Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey until a case he filed against the prosecutor is heard and determined.

The abuse of office charges against Kosgey in which he’s accused of allowing importation of overage motor vehicles were halted by Justice Nicolas Ombija.

The minister who stepped aside after the charges were filed claims that the Special Prosecutor Patrick Kiage had no legal capacity to prosecute him.

Justice Ombija granted Kosgey the permission to initiate a judicial review of his prosecution and ordered that the case pending before the anti-corruption court should not proceed until his petition is heard and determined.

“Given the submission presented by Mr Kosgey, I am persuaded that he has established a case against the Special Prosecutor and order that the proceedings in a magistrate’s court be stayed,” Justice Ombija ruled.

The judge also ordered that Kosgey deposit Sh1 million within seven days as security for the abuse of office charges in the magistrate’s court.

The Tinderet MP is charged with 11 counts of abuse of office. It is alleged that he used his office to improperly confer a benefit to various individuals and companies by exempting a total of 113 units of imported motor vehicles from the application of Kenya Standards Code of Practice for road vehicles.

He denies the charges, maintaining that he acted within the law and questioned the merit of the charges, arguing that his predecessors applied the same law but were not prosecuted.

However, senior principal magistrate Elijah Obaga ruled that Kosgey had a case to answer and put him on his defence.

Kosgey is also one of the six Kenyans facing the International Criminal Court over the 2007/2008 post election violence.

The ICC is due to give its decision whether to confirm the charges against him and his co accused who include former Higher Education Minister William Ruto and Radio Presenter Joshua arap Sang in January.

Others who are awaiting the outcome of the ICC confirmation of charges are Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, Head of Civil Service Francis Muthaura and former Police Commissioner Hussein Ali.


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