Justice John Onyiego photo in Mandera
High court Justice John Onyiego

Mandera High Court refused to unfreeze Sh43 million belonging to a Mandera businessman Ali Abdi Ibrahim who is suspected of stealing money from the county government.

In April, Ali Abdi Ibrahim’s two accounts were frozen after the Assets Recovery Authority told the court they speculated he was laundering money.

One account had Sh39,647,426 and the other Sh3,857,943 - both at Equity Bank in Mandera.

Ibrahim then filed an application asking the court to lift the orders arguing that his family was suffering.

He claimed that the order deprived him of reasonable expenses and caused undue hardship for his family and personal affairs including his business.

However, Justice John Onyiego said the ARA had proven that the two accounts had suspicious transactions.

“There are several direct deposits in terms of millions which have not been explained an indication of possible money laundering,” the judge ruled.

“Besides, he did not state how much an average his family requires for daily upkeep to persuade the court, he did not also tell the court whether the money in the account is the only source of income he has,” the court noted.

The judge further ruled that the risk of lifting the order is higher than the hardship likely to be suffered by Ibrahim which, in any event, is short-lived as the money is safe for 90 days.

The officer from ARA had told the court that he had received information on money laundering and proceeds of crime in the county government.

ARA says after analysis of the statements of the two accounts, they found out that several deposits were from several companies that received funds from the county.

“In another transaction, the same account received Sh124,750,000 from various companies that were under investigations,” court papers read.

“The orders were obtained based on falsehoods, exaggeration, conjecture, bad faith and complete misapprehension of facts,” he claimed.

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