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Cyprian Nyakundi charged over Sh17.5m extortion attempt

RICHARD MUNGUTIBy RICHARD MUNGUTI
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Blogger Cyprian Nyakundi and Emmanuel Nyamweya have been charged over a Sh17.5 million extortion attempt.

Appearing before Milimani Senior Principal Magistrate Kennedy Cheruiyot on Friday, Mr Nyakundi and his co-accused denied the charges and were released on Sh300,000 cash bail each.

The two were accused of attempting to extort Sh17.5 million from a top city banker to pull down libellous articles from Mr Nyakundi’s blog.

COURT ORDER

The suspects were arrested at Westgate Mall in Nairobi on Tuesday by officers from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).

They denied receiving a down payment of Sh1 million from Victoria Commercial Bank Limited’s Chief Executive Officer Yogesh Pattni.

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The suspects allegedly demanded the money between September 10, 2019 and January 15, 2020.

The magistrate heard that Mr Pattni obtained orders blocking Mr Nyakundi from publishing the defamatory articles.

It was said that Mr Nyakundi, however, ignored the order and continued posting the articles. 

BOND APPLICATION

Although the prosecution did not oppose the release of the two on bond, the complainant objected to the suspects’ bond application. 

Defense lawyers Cliff Ombeta and Dunstan Omari urged the court to overrule the complaint and release the accused.

“If the complainant is offended by repeated offending articles, he should cite Nyakundi for contempt,” Mr Omari said.

The case will be mentioned on February 7.