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Lands official faces fraud, abuse of office charges

20 September 2013, 19:30 Joseph Njung'eh

Nyeri - A senior civil servant in the Ministry of Lands is facing charges of conspiring with others to commit an offence of corruption.

Agnes Wangu Kuria, currently stationed at Ardhi house Nairobi as a Lands Registrar, appeared before Nyeri Chief Magistrate, Wilbrodah Juma, where she denied the charges of corruption, defrauding and abuse of office.

The prosecution, led by Inspector Catherine Wambua, told court that Wangu’s case will be consolidated with that of her co-accused persons.

The accused was represented by lawyer Njuguna Kimani, and was released on a KES 200 000 bond and a surety of similar amount or a cash bail of KES 150 000.

The court heard that the accused person, together with others not before court, on diverse dates between September 15th, 2011 and August 15th 2011 at Nyeri town District Lands office, jointly conspired to commit an offence of corruption.

They are said to have conspired to circumvent a subsisting caution of land, Ruguru/Gachika 275, by causing the property to be transferred from the name of Papius Mathenge Kibicho to Jean Wanjiku Mathenge, by disregarding the laid down procedures for such transfer.

She is also charged with conspiring to defraud the government of KES 167 900 during to the transfer of the land. She allegedly committed the offence between May 6th and August 20th 2011 at the District lands office in Nyeri town.

In addition, the Lands officer did not take plea of the other count of abuse of office since the magistrate said the charge sheet did not specify her position in the Ministry by then.

“It is not specified whom she was while committing the offence. It just says employees while an employee can be a Securicor officer, cleaner or any other person,” the magistrate told the prosecutor.

In that count, she was charged that between May 6th and August 20th 2011, jointly with others, at the District Lands office in Nyeri town, being employees of the Ministry of Lands, used their respective offices to improperly confer a benefit on Papius Mathenge Kibicho by effecting the transfer of land from Papius Mathenge Kibicho to Jean Wanjiku Mathenge thereby facilitating the sale of the property to Thuo Mathenge.

The case was fixed to proceed on October 11 with a mention on September 24.

The accused is also facing similar charges of abuse of office and illegal allocation of land in a Nairobi court.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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