Kenya Prisons Senior Sergeant Grace Nyamohanga alias Nasra, prison warders Jackson Mureithi Manyara and Zachary Kimathi Cosma were charged before Milimani Senior Principal Magistrate Kennedy Cheruiyot.
Also charged were Sylvester David Masiaga, who is Ms Nyamohanga’s nephew, and Peter Ngere Githu.
All the five denied charges of fraudulently obtaining Sh48,540,000 from members of the public who were promised jobs in government agencies.
Defence lawyers Victor Olao and Jason Orina Maranga applied for bail for the accused, saying they are sickly. The prosecution did not oppose the application.
Detective Nicholas ole Sena filed 72 counts against the prison warders and the two civilians and presented evidence showing they pretended they were in a position to secure employment for the victims at several organisations.
The organisations included the Kenya Airports Authority, the National Police Service, the National Lands Commission and the Kenya National Highways Authority, the Anti-Counterfeit Agency, KenGen and the Nairobi Metropolitan Services.
Evidence presented by the prosecution showed that over Sh22 million was held in Mr Manyara’s account while Mr Masiaga processed over Sh15 million through his account.
“I urge this court to consider the number of charges filed against the accused plus the severity of the punishment while granting bail,” the prosecution stated.
But defence lawyers Olao and Maranga impressed upon the court not to be swayed by the amounts appearing in the charges.
Quoting various authorities, Mr Olao said bail should not be punitive and noted that Ms Nyamohanga underwent a surgery and has not recovered so her bail terms should not be stringent.
Mr Maranga noted that the serving prison officers have fixed abodes and that severe bail terms amount to infringement of their constitutional rights.
“Sgt Nyamohanga is a guardian of Mr Masiaga, who is jobless, and will bear the burden of depositing bail for him. Be lenient to her,” he added.
Bond and bail
The accused were charged with fraudulently receiving large sums of money at the Industrial Area Prison Staff Quarters with Nairobi between September 1,2020 and March 31.
Sgt Nyamohanga and Mr Masiaga denied receiving Sh4.6 million from Margaret Mbula, alleging they would secure employment for 14 job seekers in various parastatals.
Sgt Nyamohanga also denied receiving Sh1million from Nahashon Kiarie Njane, claiming she would secure employment for his three children at the Anti-Counterfeit Agency.
Mr Cheruiyot released Sgt Nyamahogo and Mr Masiaga on a bond of Sh4 million with a surety of the same amount or Sh2 million cash bail, each.
The other three accused persons were each freed on a cash bail of Sh500,000 or a bond of Sh2 million with one surety of the same amount.
The case will be mentioned on June 21.