Former Juja MP George Thuo’s widow, Judy, has been let off the hook in a Ksh30 million graft case involving a contract for the supply of transformers to Kenya Pipleline Corporation (KPC) that left tongues wagging.
She becomes the latest person to benefit from the ” Engineer Michael Kamau Court of Appeal judgment” which ruled that corruption cases instituted in 2015 sprung from an illegality owing to the fact that EACC was not “properly constituted” at the time the corruption cases were filed.
Judy Thuo, was however discharged alongside former Kenya Pipeline bigwigs Charles Tanui and others, and her Redline Limited company under Section 87 (a) which may allow prosecutors to pursue her at a future date.
The Director of Public Prosecutions through state counsel Joseph Riungu told an anti-corruption court that the charges the suspects faced were no longer tenable in the face of the Court of Appeal judgment concerning 2015 corruption cases.
“Our grounds of withdrawal are based on the Court of Appeal matter filed by Engineer Kamau…” Riungu told trial magistrate Felix Kombo.
He said EACC cases investigated during the period when there were no commissioners had been annulled by the superior court and invoked a section of the law that allows the DPP to withdraw such cases at any stage before judgment.
The net effect of this withdrawal also rendered a motion one of the suspects had lodged against their prosecution ineffective, the court heard.
The court heard that the investigating agency, herein EACC, was not properly constituted when it forwarded Judy Thuo’s file to the DPP for action and that case was no longer legally tenable as it arose from an illegal institution.
Former KPC MD was charged alongside former Juja MP George Thuo’s widow Judy Thuo and her company Redline ltd and four officials over a fraudulent payment of Ksh30 million in a phantom tender at the Kenya Pipeline Company for the installation of transformers.
Judy had been charged alongside her son Ian Gichuhi who was absolved of blame and let off the hook earlier.
They had been accused of receiving indefinite payment of Ksh28.5 million from Kenya Pipeline (KPC).
Judy denied receiving payment by fraudulently acquiring public property.
She was charged alongside the four former KPC bigwigs who denied various counts of abuse of office, false documentation and irregular payments contravening procurement laws.
Chief Engineer Josphat Kipkoech Sirma and Chief Technical Manager Elias Karumi are accused of making an irregular payment to Redline Limited for the installation, testing and commissioning of auto-transformers on the basis of falsified documents.
The court ordered that their cash bails of Ksh350,000 be refunded to them.
They faced six counts of abuse of office and failing to comply with procurement rules in awarding the contract.
Judy was separately charged with acquiring public funds illegally.
Recently, the court has also discharged former judiciary boss Gladys Shollei, Engineer Michael Kamau himself, Charity Ngilu, former KPC Managing Director George Okungu on similar grounds.