Ex-NSSF manager fined Sh2.6bn in graft case to remain behind bars

Former NSSF investment manager Francis Zuriels Moturi

Former NSSF investment manager Francis Zuriels Moturi at the Anti-corruption court on January 31, 2022. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO | NMG

The jailed former National Social Security Fund investment manager Francis Moturi will remain in prison pending the determination of his appeal against a Sh2.6 billion fine and five-year imprisonment term over graft, a judge has ruled.

While dismissing Mr Moturi's request for bail, Justice Esther Maina said there were no exceptional circumstances to warrant his release from the Industrial Area Prison where he was incarcerated following his conviction over economic crimes committed more than a decade ago.

The judge rejected arguments related to the advanced age and ill-health of the retired civil servant, stating that the two issues do not "constitute exceptional circumstances".

Mr Moturi, 72, was convicted in January this year alongside three officials of a collapsed stock brokerage firm, Discount Securities Ltd (DSL), for the loss of Sh1.2 billion at the pensioners’ fund over a decade ago.

They were fined a total of Sh9.6 billion jointly. They had been charged with five counts of corruption-related offences.

At the culmination of the trial, Mr Moturi was convicted of two counts: conspiracy to defraud and deceiving a principal.

In the first count, he was sentenced to a fine of Sh1 million in default to serve two years imprisonment while in the second count he was fined Sh1 million in default of three-year imprisonment.

The trial court also imposed a mandatory sentence or a fine of Sh2.4 billion for occasioning the pensioners to suffer a loss of Sh1.2 billion at the NSSF.

The amount is twice the money that the NSSF lost between 2004 and 2007 after hatching a scheme to defraud the pensioners.

The trial court made further orders that the sentences shall, in default of fine, run consecutively and that none of the accused persons may be appointed to public office for the next 10 years.

Following the judgment, Mr Moturi's advocates, Assa Nyakundi and Peter Wanyama, filed an urgent application seeking to have him admitted to bail, pending appeal. They said he was suffering from high blood pressure and diabetes.

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