MPs walk tight rope as court detains suspect in fraud saga

A Nairobi court yesterday allowed police to detain for four days a man accused of cyber bullying and trying to extort money from Members of Parliament, even as it emerged that the suspect could be harbouring dossier that is potentially damaging to some of his accusers.

Wazir Benson Masubo alias Wazir Chacha, 25, who was arrested in Tarime, Tanzania, will be held at Central Police Station, Nairobi, as detectives conduct more investigations.

Even as he appeared in court, police sources had leaked information to a section of the media to the effect that Wazir’s phone was found to contain images that could expose intimate relationships with some of the female MPs he had allegedly targeted for extortion.

Police sources said the suspect’s phone had been confiscated for forensic probe that could reveal details of his communications as well as video, audio and photographic records. Police are said to be keen on any communication or contacts with MPs, especially female legislators.

A section of the media has reported that he exchanged raunchy messages with some female legislators, while others rebuffed his lewd advances and rebuked him. Milimani Resident Magistrate Christine Njagi further directed Wazir be taken to Mathare Mental Hospital for psychiatric assessment after his lawyer Job Geresa claimed he had mental challenges.

“I allow the police application and I order the suspect to be detained for four days at Central Police Station for investigations and metal check up to be completed.

The case will be mentioned on April 9,” ruled the magistrate. Wazir is accused of soliciting money from MPs by impersonating some of them and pleading sickness.

Geresa said his client had been in and out of hospitals seeking treatment for a mental condition. He informed the court that when the police arrested him in Tanzania he was going to Mwibiri Hospital in Mwanza for treatment.

Chief Inspector John Kiprop attached to Parliament Police Station, while seeking more time, informed the court the police are yet to record all prosecution witness statements and obtain more exhibits to be used in the case.

“I require more time to complete my investigations to enable us recover other exhibits that are crucial in this case,” said Kiprop. He said they were still investigating four offences against the suspect namely obtaining money by false pretense, conspiracy to defraud, intention to defraud and impersonating an MP.

Kiprop also said the suspect was arrested while trying to escape to Democratic Republic of Congo after the Milimani Chief Magistrate’s court issued a warrant of arrest against him.

The Prosecution objected to his release on bond pending investigations saying the offences facing Masubo were serious and if granted bond he was likely to abscond. “The suspect has no fixed abode thus, if released on bail, he is likely not to be traced,” said the prosecution.

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