Marijuana trafficking suspect, Nancy Kigunzu better known by her codename Mathe wa Ngara, will remain behind bars for the foreseeable future after she was denied bail on Thursday, August 31.
Mathe, along with three other co-defendants, faced charges of trafficking cannabis with an estimated value of Sh18.3 million at the JKIA Law courts. They faced another count of possessing funds that the state alleges are proceeds of crime. The specified amount is Sh 13.4 million, which is under the custody of the state.
The co-defendants are Teresia Wanjiru, initially misidentified as Mathe wa Ngara, and two individuals presumed to be minors, and were awaiting an age verification process ordered by the court.
Investigators established that one of them was 19-year-old Eugene Otiende Jumba, who was denied bail alongside Mathe wa Ngara.
The fourth co-accused is a minor; his file was transferred to the children’s court at Milimani Law Court. Given that no adult claimed responsibility for him, the court placed him under the care of Kabete Children’s Home.
Meanwhile, Teresia was granted bail of Sh50,000 on condition that she provide two contact persons, one of whom should be a blood relative.
Magistrate Njeri Thuku also directed Teresia to personally appear at the JKIA Probation office within seven days to submit a social report.
As for Mathe wa Ngara and Eugene Jumba, the magistrate agreed with the State that they posed a risk of fleeing due to their involvement in drug trafficking.
“Prosecution has placed strong compelling reasons. It is not in the interest of justice to grant bond,” the court said.
In their argument against the release of the suspects, the prosecution said they would interfere with witnesses and abscond court.
But the suspects, represented by Lawyer Danstan Omari, said they could not tamper with witnesses as all the witnesses were police officers themselves.
“If the state is admitting that its own officers are going to be compromised, then this country will be a banana republic,” Omari said.
He also mentioned that the nature of the offense is not as serious as murder or treason, where accused persons have been granted bail before.
During the hearing of the bail application on Monday, Mathe wa Ngara collapsed, forcing the magistrate to adjourn the session.
Before Ms. Kigunzu’s collapse, her lawyers Cliff Ombeta and Danstan Omari, were engrossed in a debate with State prosecutors regarding the whereabouts of her money, Sh13,474,520 to be precise.
The State informed the court that the funds are being held at the Central Bank of Kenya.
The mention of the minor’s case is scheduled for September 19, while Teresia’s case is set for September 4, 2023.