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Three Congolese, politician charged in alleged Sh230 million fake gold scam

Five people among them a city lawyer have been charged at the Makadara law courts with defrauding a US citizen of USD 1 million (about Sh133 million).

In total, the alleged fake precious gems dealers were charged with pocketing over Sh230 million from their victims in the United States of America (USA) and Seoul, Korea.

Those arraigned were lawyer Thomas Otieno Ngoe, Nicholas Otieno Ndolo, politician Steve Okute and Bruno Otieno Orienda.

Others arraigned are a Liberian national Joseph Bedell and two Congolese nationals Mathews Bayindu Patsum and Mercelin Wa Nyanguangu Bruce.

Bedell, Patsum and Bruce were remanded in custody to await bail determination in a separate Sh84 million fake gold trade.

Ngoe and Ndolo also suffered a legal setback after Milimani senior principal magistrate Zainab Abdul declined to order Police to return properties take away from them.

Ngoe and Ndolo have denied defrauding an American National Seth Adams Bernistein USD1million(KSh133m) claiming they will ship to him 3,000 kilograms of gold from Kenya to Dubai.

Okute and Bruno are charged with defrauding an American National Marjorie Grant Sh 12.7 Million claiming they are in a position to sell to him 33 kilograms of gold.

Bedell who was represented by lawyers Ishmael Nyaribo and Victor Mosota denied defrauding Shanmugam Sundar Darmaraju USD408,229 (KSh57million) pretending a shipment of 6.483 kilograms of gold was being detained at the Jomo Kenyatta International Aiport (JKIA).

Nyaribo urged chief magistrate Lucas Onyina to free Bedell arguing the court lacks jurisdiction to try a foreigner who allegedly committed a crime in a foreign country.

“What this court can do is to release Bedell since he did not commit any crime in Kenya,” Nyaribo told Onyina.

The two Congolese nationals Mathew Bayindu Patsum and Mercelin Wa Nyanguangu Bruce denied defrauding Tophead Vision Company Limited registered in Seoul, Korea, USD 214,500 (KSh27,585,000) alleging they were in a position to ship 175 kilograms of gold to the company.

They are accused of pretending they would ship the gold from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Onyina heard from state prosecutor Anderson Gikunda that the accused told the Korean company the gold was being detained at JKIA.

Gikunda opposed their release on bond saying they are of no known fixed abode in Kenya.

Mathew and Mercelin also face another charge of being possession of 13 rolls of bhang valued at Sh600.

The said drug was recovered from them at Adams Arcade Nairobi.

Onyina will determine on April 14 whether to free Mathew and Mercelin on bond.

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