Kenya seeks to extradite suspects to Jersey

6th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

Kenya's chief prosecutor on Wednesday authorised arrest warrants for a lawmaker and the former head of the country's power utility wanted by the British dependency of Jersey on money laundering charges.

In May, the Jersey authorities sought Kenya's assistance to extradite legislator Chris Okemo and former Kenya Power and Lighting Company (KPLC) chief Samuel Gichuru accused of money laundering and corruption.

The two are accused of having received through bank accounts in Jersey 10 million dollars in bribes from British firms for contracts awarded to them by KPLC.

Okemo was the energy minister between 1999 and 2001 and later finance minister for two years from 2001, while Gichuru headed the power firm from 1983 and 2003.

Jersey is a self-governing British dependency. Part of the Channel Islands lying between Britain and France, it was long an offshore banking centre.

"I have no objection to the said request for surrender of the above named fugitives," Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko said in court documents.

"I authorise that you (court magistrate) proceed and issue a warrant for the arrest and detention of the said fugitives..."

A Nairobi magistrate court will issue a ruling on Tuesday.

© 2011 AFP

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