Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua can now breathe easy after a lead detective from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations sought to have the Ksh7.3 billion graft case against the DP withdrawn on grounds that he was compelled to implicate the suspect.
In an affidavit filed in court, Kuria Obadiah alleges that his team was under immense pressure from their former DCI boss George Kinoti to make recommendations that would put Gachagua in the dock.
Due to the rush to charge Gachagua, the detective says, crucial areas were not covered in the investigations.
"There are crucial areas of investigations that were not adequately covered in the course of our investigations that would shed some light in determining the culpability or otherwise of the accused persons charged,” Obadiah says in the affidavit.
Obadiah told the court that it would be prejudicial to continue with the case against the former Mathira Member of Parliament and nine others because of the gaps in the investigations.
He asked the court to drop the matter under Section 87 (a) of the Criminal Procedure Code.
Several officers in Obadiah's team are also said to have recanted their earlier statements implicating Gachagua in corruption, amid the DP's stand that the case was politically instigated.
Sources in the know say the DCI officers were required to present documents and files covering five areas for the case to proceed but failed to do so forcing the protection to seek a review of the case when the matter came up for mention at the Milimani Law Courts on Monday, October 17, 2022.
Milimani Anti-Corruption Magistrate Victor Wakumile granted the Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji three weeks to review the case against Gachagua and his co-accused persons.
Gachagua's lawyer Gibson Kimani did not oppose the request by the DPP to review the charges against him.
The court adjourned the matter to November 21 for the DPP to inform the court on his decision to review the case.
Wakumile, however, ordered Gachagua and the other co-accused persons to appear in court in person during the hearing set to commence on November 21.
In the case, Gachagua and Nyeri Senator Wahome Mwangi are charged alongside Anne Nduta Ruo, Julianne Jahenda Makaa, Samuel Murimi, Grace Wambui Kariuki, Lawrence Kimaru, Irene Wambui Ndigiriri, David Reuben and M/S Rapid Medical Supplies.
The charge sheet states that on diverse dates between 2013 and 2020 in Nairobi, Gachagua allegedly fraudulently received Ksh7,330,011,265 through three bank accounts domiciled at Rafiki Micro-Finance bank while knowing the monies were proceeds of crime.
The DP is also accused that on December 29, 2014, in Nairobi county, jointly with others not before the court, fraudulently acquired Ksh6 million public funds for supply of Dialysis machines to Nyeri Provincial General Hospital.
Gachagua's close associates
Gachagua was charged with money laundering for allegedly receiving a total of Ksh104,821,205 from Bungoma County Government between January 2018 and June 2019, with intent to unlawfully dispose of monies. He is also alleged to have received Ksh7,583,505 from the Kwale County Government with intent to unlawfully dispose of the money.
Gachagua is also charged with conflict of interest on grounds that between October 2018 and January 2019 being MP for Mathira Constituency he privately benefited from a contract awarded for construction of Njathaini Primary School, which was funded by the Mathira Constituency Development Fund (CDF).
The contract, according to the charge sheet, was awarded to a company owned by one of Gachagua’s close associates.