Kenya graft case pushed to December

October 27, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 27 – The hearing of a Goldenberg criminal case pitting businessman Kamlesh Pattni and three others has been adjourned to December.

Nairobi Chief Magistrate Gilbert Mutembei postponed the hearing on Tuesday pending a response from Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) involving Mr Pattni.

State Counsel James Warui told Mr Mutembei that the Attorney General wrote to CBK last week seeking clarification on claims that Mr Pattni had been exonerated from any blame by the bank.

“ I had sought to know whether they had settled complaints made against Mr Pattni but the bank is yet to reply,” Mr Warui said.

He added: “Given the circumstances, the AG has requested this court to adjourn this matter pending a reply from CBK in order for him to give further directions”. Mr Mutembei directed that the case be mentioned before him on December 14.

Mr Pattni, former Treasury Permanent Secretary Wilfred Koinange, former CBK deputy governor Eliphaz Riungu and former Kenya Commercial Bank Managing Director Elijah arap Bii have been charged with conspiring to steal Sh5.8 billion from the Treasury between April 19 and July 1993.

Mr Koinange, Mr Bii and Mr Riungu are separately facing charges of abuse of office and have denied abusing their respective offices by sanctioning three contentious transactions from the Treasury to Goldenberg International. They are out on a bond of Sh10 million each with two sureties of similar amount.

Last November a three judge bench exonerated former CBK governor Eric Kotut from blame saying the Commission of Inquiry into the Goldenberg scandal made adverse findings against him without any credible evidence.

The judges said the findings and recommendations of the Justice Samuel Bosire-led Commission of Inquiry into the Goldenberg scandal were biased and totally flawed.

They observed that factual errors in the report are likely to deny Mr Mutembei a chance to adjudicate fairly.


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