Bank branch manager charged with aiding terrorist attack

NAIROBI, KENYA: Diamond Trust bank branch manager has been charged at Milimani Law courts with aiding the flow of money linked to the Nairobi Dusit terror attack.

Sophia Njoki Mbogo appeared before Chief magistrate Francis Andayi and denied three counts of failure to report suspicions regarding proceeds of crime, aiding and abetting the commission of a terrorist act and failure to report cash transactions against the law.

The court heard that on diverse dates between December 4, 2018 and January 5, 2019 at Diamond Trust Bank Eastleigh Branch within Nairobi County, jointly with others not before court, being a branch manager, she failed to report suspicious activity involving transactions carried out at the branch which is Sh34,736,550.

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The money is suspected to be related to money laundering or the proceeds of crime.

In the second count, Njoki was charged that on similar dates and place, aided and abated the commission of a terrorism act which is ‘The Dusit Attack’on the January 15,2019 by failing to report suspicious activity involving transactions carried out at the said bank and the branch which is Sh34,736,550 suspected to have funded that attack.

On the third count, the branch manager was charged that she knowingly failed to report cash transactions carried out at the bank and branch which amounts to USD 10,000 on December 4, 2018 and January 5, 2019.

The prosecution told the court that they intend to oppose bail so that they can be able to complete investigations against the accused.

Through her lawyer former high court judge Nicholus Ombija, she requested the court to release her on favorable terms on the grounds that it is unprocedural for the state to make such an application.

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“The accused has been in custody for 30 days without charges being levelled against her,” said Ombija.

He added that holding an accused person without leaving charges and seeking more time amounts to serious breach of the rights of an individual.

“We urge you not to allow the court to be misused as it is an independent institution, if you allow this kind of issue we don't know how far the executive will go,” said Ombija.

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Diamond Trust bankNairobi County