Four members of a Nairobi based self-help group were on Friday morning arraigned in court for their involvement in a Sh1 billion land fraud case in Donholm Estate, Nairobi.
The four Sowesava self-help group officials, who include a former Kayole chief Alexander Hoops, Patrobas Awino, Peter Gitau and Peter Njoroge are accused of forging a title deed, a Lease and an allotment letter.
Appearing before Chief magistrate Martha Mutuku at the Milimani law courts, the suspects were released on a cash bail of Sh1 million or a bond of Sh2 million each after they pleaded not guilty.
“Hoops and Awino will have to remain in custody until their bond terms are processed,” said Mutuku.
According to the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI), the arrest and subsequent arraignment of the four followed complaints filed at DCI’s Land Fraud Investigations Unit in 2018 by two parties; Sowesava Self Help Group and Gidjoy Company Limited.
In 2019, detectives had established that Gidjoy Co. Ltd bought the land from Continental Ltd, thereafter legally and successfully transferring the ownership of the parcel of land to its name.
“But the Sowesava officials had maintained that Continental Ltd surrendered the parcel to the Nairobi County Government, upon which they (Sowesava) were issued with an allotment letter and processed a title deed,” stated DCI.
The self help group had hence gone ahead to subdivide the parcel into 100 portions, which they were in the process of selling to unsuspecting members of the public when detectives stepped in.
Preliminary investigations revealed that both the allotment letter and the mother title deed presented by Sowesava had been forged, leading to the arrest of four of its officials in 2019.
However, the four filed an injunction before the High Court, which was heard and upon determination.
The matter will be mentioned on August 19, 2021, for pretrial directions.