Ivory woman to pay Sh40m fine


Ruth, Mbula The Nation

Date Published
A magistrate on Thursday fined a Kilgoris woman Sh40 million after finding her guilty of possessing five pieces of elephant tusks.If Ms Ruth Kwamboka Mose fails to pay the fine, she will be jailed for four years.
Ms Mose had been arraigned before Senior Resident Magistrate Amos Mokoross, charged with being in possession of the tusks weighing seven kilogrammes and with a street value of Sh1.4 million without a certificate of ownership. She faced a second count of dealing with government trophy without a license.
She pleaded guilty to both offences.
While giving his judgment, the magistrate said the offence carried stiff penalties and that the law was very rigid on the sentence to be meted out.
“An offence such as this prescribes a fine of not less than Sh20 million or imprisonment for life,” said Mr Mokoross.
He said that he had records of previous convictions for the accused person where she was sentenced for possessing wildlife trophy and for which she is currently serving a three-year jail term.
Mr Mokoross added that the offence had led to depletion of wildlife in the country and should be discouraged by all means.
In Mombasa, the Director of Public Prosecutions asked a court to detain a KRA employee and a driver for 30 days to enable police complete investigations related to exportation of elephant tusks valued at Sh576 million.
The DPP’s application is based on the grounds that Ms Lucy Kahoto of KRA and Mr Musa Jacob Lithare, a driver, were arrested as suspects in the exportation of 511 pieces of tusks, which were seized in Thailand.
According to the application, the tusks weighing 3,127 kilogrammes were concealed in 220 bags of tea leaves destined for Laos.
“The respondents are prime suspects having abetted in the commission of the offence,” said Senior Principal Prosecution Counsel Brian Ayodo on behalf of the DPP.
Additional reporting by Philip Muyanga