Mathira MP, Rigathi Gachagua has forfeited Sh200 million to the State.
Judge Esther Maina of the High Court concluded on Thursday that the politician and Kenya Kwanza’s presidential running mate, has not adequately explained how he obtained the riches from government entities.
The High Court froze Sh200 million that belonged to Mr. Gachagua in 2020 while it awaited a petition from a State agency requesting that the money be forfeited to the government.
Due to transfers made from government agencies to businesses connected to the politician, as evidenced by court documents, the monies are thought to constitute the proceeds of crime.
The Assets Recovery Agency (ARA) reports that early investigations revealed Mr. Gachagua and Jenne Enterprises Limited were associated with an alleged sophisticated money laundering scam.
“The court finds that the funds are liable to forfeiture as the Assets Recovery Authority (ARA) has discharged its burden of proof that the funds were received by Gachagua,” Justice Maina ruled.
On July 23, 2021, agents from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) had arrested Gachagua from his Nyeri home on suspicion of money laundering.
He was then taken to the DCI’s main office for questioning. The Mathira MP arrest came after he was discovered to be connected to Ksh12 billion in payments that were made through 42 proxy businesses.
Gachagua was accused with conspiring to conduct a corruption violation, fraudulently obtaining public property, money laundering, obtaining criminal profits and conflict of interest.
“There are reasonable grounds to believe that the suspect’s bank accounts were used as a conduit for money laundering in efforts to conceal, disguise the nature, source, disposition and movement of illicit funds and should be preserved,” the agency submitted to court.