Billionaire businessman Ashok Doshi has obtained orders stopping his prosecution over disputed ownership of a 2.5-acre piece of land in Nairobi.
The Environment and Land Court also stopped the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) and the Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) from arresting or charging Doshi’s wife Pratibha Ashok.
Judge Oscar Angote further restrained the Chief Land Registrar from cancelling or altering Doshi’s title for the land situated not very far from the State House on the Processional Way.
Greenview Lodge Ltd, which is also claiming the land, was ordered not to make any development or transactions on the land.
The decision was a relief to the businessman who was scheduled to appear in court for pre-trial in the case where he was charged on April 17 with four counts of conspiracy to defraud, making a document without authority and forgery.
Dispute relating to the land currently valued at over Sh600 million dates back to 1992 when Doshi allegedly bought it from Jennifer Nthenya, the proprietor of Greenview, at Sh20 million.
However, Nthenya, in 2009, claimed she sold the land at Sh120 million and allegedly forged a sale agreement to claim a balance of Sh100 million.
Doshi, in his petition filed through Okwach and Company Advocates, questions the DPP Noordin Haji's refusal to charge Nthenya despite recommendations by the DCI in 2013 and 2021.
“The DPP and the DCI’s sudden turnaround in their conduct of the case is alarming as they have chosen to go against their own investigative findings that were delivered under oath in order to aid the Greenview Lodge Ltd and Jennifer to execute her nefarious plot,” says Okwach.
According to the lawyer, Doshi’s arrest and prosecution was out of malice and abuse of power to aid Nthenya and people who want to grab his land given that the DCI had earlier done investigations and established that his title is genuine and he paid the Sh1.2 million stamp duty.
Contrary to claims that the investigations were manipulated by former DCI boss George Kinoti, the lawyer states that the recommendations to charge Nthenya were done in 2013 before Kinoti came to office.
Doshi alleges that the scheme involves collusion with corrupt officers from the Ministry of Lands, who want to interfere with the title and allow Nthenya to sell the land to three individuals named Hassan Abdi , Hussein Mahad and Rama Hamisi Bindo.
“The agreement was for Jennifer to obtain a fake title to sell the land to the notorious fraudsters who have already advanced to her Sh20 million. The mount was intended to bribe the Ministry of Lands officials for them to issue the fake title,” says Okwach.
He says the ministry attempted to revoke Doshi’s title in 2020.
He claimed that on the day Doshi was charged, the fraudsters engaged officers from the General Service Unit, who stormed the land and chased away security guards.
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Justice Angote directed the DPP, the DCI, the Chief Land Registrar and Greenview to respond within five days, and scheduled the hearing for Tuesday.