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Former Sports CS Hassan Wario, co-accused in court for sentencing

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Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario and his co-accused Stephen Soi have this morning been presented at the Milimani Law Court, Nairobi for sentencing.

The duo was yesterday found guilty of corruption, abuse of office and misuse of public funds during the 2016 Olympic Games held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

They are appearing before Anti-Corruption Court Chief Magistrate Elizabeth Juma.

The prosecution on Thursday argued that Wario and Soi owed a responsibility to the public to ensure that public funds were utilized transparently.

“The offenses have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt, and a sentence proportionate to the offenses should be given,” the prosecution urged the court.

But Wario’s lawyer Roger Sagana, seeking a non-custodial offense and a fine for his client, argued that Wario was a remorseful offender.

“The first offender (Wario) is a changed man. He has remained a law-abiding citizen after the events of 2016 and is receptive to rehabilitation,” Sagana argued.

He told the court that the former CS is not a threat to the community and has no pending charges. “The offender has been sufficiently punished,” his lawyer Sagana said.  

Lawyer Joel Bosek, representing former National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) official Stephen Soi argued that his client was not acting alone when making approvals for the allowances to attend the Rio Olympics.

“There were other people involved,” the court heard.

On Wednesday, September 15, the court held the Prosecution had proven Wario had a role in the embezzlement of Sh55 million allocated to the National Olympic Committee of Kenya.

A report compiled by an investigation team led by Dean of Students at Strathmore University, Paul Ochieng in 2016, revealed that at least Sh88.6 million was reported to have been embezzled.

The money had been earmarked to buy air tickets for team members but was instead taken by unidentified ministry officials.

The former CS was then charged alongside Haron Komen Chebet, who served as Director of Administration and Patrick Kimithi Nkabu, Richard Tirus Ekai, Stephen Kiptanui Soi and Francis Kanyili Paul.

Sentencing is ongoing.

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