All the remaining 13 suspects who had been charged alongside former Cabinet secretaries Charity Ngilu and Michael Kamau in the Sh8 billion Karen land scandal have been freed.
The Court of Appeal quashed the criminal charges on grounds that the accused were being investigated by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) when it did not have commissioners.
The 13 include former National Social Security Fund (NSSF) managing trustee Josphat Konzolo, who was accused of engaging in illegal transactions in the Sh8 billion Karen land.
Also freed is former PS Engineer Gilbert Mong’are Arasa, who was being defended by lawyer Cecil Miller, as well as lawyer Macmillan Mutinda Mutiso and James Mbaluka.
Others who have been let off the hook are former senior Lands Registrar Ms Sarah Njuhi Mwenda, Pauline Wanjiku Gatimu and Mark Muigai Wanderi.
Mrs Ngilu, now the Kitui governor, and Mr Kamau, who had both been accused of irregularly altering a drawing for a road leading to a loss of Sh33 million, were earlier cleared by the court.
Terminating the cases, judges Milton Makhandia, William Ouko and Kathurima M’Inoti said the trial was irregular as EACC commenced investigations after receiving directives from President Uhuru Kenyatta when he gave a State-of-the-Nation address to Parliament on March 26, 2015.
The President directed EACC to conclude investigations within 60 days then forward the file to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Keriako Tobiko for action.
Soon after the presidential address, five ministers were suspended – Mrs Ngilu (Lands), Michael Kamau (Transport), Michael Chirchir (Energy), Kazungu Kambi (Labour) and Felix Koskey (Agriculture).
Appearing at the Anti-Corruption Court on Thursday, defence lawyers Miller, Hiram Kago and Stephen Bundotich told Senior Principal Magistrate Lawrence Mugambi that the 13 suspects had been freed by appellate judges, just as Mrs Ngilu and Mr Kamau had been.