Kenya: Ivory Haul Man Back in Court


By Brandy Mwandola, The Star

Date Published

A MAN who was released on a Sh5million bond for transporting ivory was yesterday arraigned in court after new charges were instituted against him.

Nicholas Maweu had been released in July last year.

Yesterday, the court was informed that Maweu committed the offence between June 25 and July 8 last year, at Changamwe district within Mombasa county.

The prosecution said he contravened provisions of East African Community Customs Management Act 2004 by taking restricted goods from a customs area.

The restricted goods were 444 pieces of ivory tusks valued at Sh164.3 million and were packed in a container. After investigations, it was found that the said ivory tusks were later to be exported to Malaysia.

Maweu denied to the charges before chief magistrate Maxwell Gicheru. His lawyer Michael Maundu argued that his client has appeared in court three times with no proceedings.

Maundu added that the case could not proceed yesterday as expected since he did not have the statement documents and the witness’s copies after the new charges were instituted.

The lawyer prayed with the court that he be issued with the statement copies together with the witness statements the prosecution intends to rely on during the hearing of the case.

He also requested that the case be adjourned to a further mention for him to be able to go through the fresh charges facing his client.

Maundu pleaded with the court not to change the bond terms given to his client during the previous mention of the case before senior chief magistrate Richard Odenyo.

Prosecutor Eugene Wangila had no opposition against the adjournment and the extension of bond term.

Wangila informed the court that the former prosecutor Alexander Muteti who was previously in charge of the case had confirmed that the major investigations on the case were complete, so he had no reason to object the extension of the bond term.

The magistrate granted the adjournment of the case and extension of the stated bond terms. The next hearing will be on September 4.