, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 8 – The High Court has temporarily stopped the prosecution of 11 suspects accused of money laundering in the Sh791 million NYS scandal.
Justice George Odunga issued the order following an application by one of the suspects, Patrick Onyango Ogolla, who argues that the prosecution is unlawful.
Ogolla said the intended criminal charge should be halted pending hearing and determination of his case at the High Court.
The suspects who had been summoned to appear before Chief Magistrate Daniel Ogembo did not to turn up following the order of the High Court.
The move prompted the prosecution to apply for the extension of the summons before the trial court.
The prosecution sought for more time to move to the High Court to seek interpretation of Justice Odunga’s order.
The case will be mentioned on March 18 to confirm the status of the order.
The 11 suspects include businessman Benson Gethi, Josephine Irungu, John Kago, Charity Wangoi and Paul Kinuthia.
Others are Samwel Wachenje alias Sam Mwadime, Patrick Ogolla, Antony Gethi, John Hope, Martin Gachara and Jedida Wangari.
Last year, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations recommended that 21 officers in the Devolution Ministry be charged with fraud after it found that they had conspired to defraud the ministry.
The DCI recommended that the 21 officers to be charged alongside four suppliers whom they paid Sh791,385,000 for the supply of road construction and building materials between December 2014 and April last year.
Family Bank was also caught up in the NYS scandal prompting DPP Keriako Tobiko to order a probe of its top managers.
Anne Waiguru resigned as Devolution Cabinet Secretary amid the scandal, citing health reasons.
In November last year, Josephine Kabura in whose account Sh791 million NYS cash was deposited and redistributed denied charges of embezzling funds when she appeared before chief magistrate Daniel Ogembo.
The amount was deposited into the accounts of Kabura’s three companies – Form Home Builders, Reinforced Concrete Technology and Roof and All Trading.