Court reveals ID of Sh102m cash h***t beneficiary
The puzzle over the identity of the Kenyan woman who received Sh102 million from a Belgian lover has finally been resolved after the two lovebirds appeared virtually in court together.
The Kenyan lady, Felesta Nyamathira Njoroge and her lover Marc De Mesel appeared together before Justice Esther Maina on Tuesday with the court declaring the matter sorted out.
The couple, which appeared before the court through a virtual link from their home in Belgium, also confirmed in sworn affidavits that their advocates remained Owaga, Nadida and Ndindi Company Advocates.
Justice Maina subsequently directed the couple and the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA) to file written submissions in respect to the forfeiture application filed by the latter. She further ordered that the case be mentioned on March 9.
The case had been temporarily suspended last year after two women appeared in court with their respective lawyers claiming the millions.
Maosa and Nyangoro Company Advocates had appeared in court alleging to have been instructed by a woman posing as the real Felesta Nyamathira Njoroge and laying claim to the millions.
Separately, Owaga, Ndindi and Nadida Company Advocates through lawyer Walter Owaga also lodged a suit in the same court claiming the money on behalf of their client, one Felesta Nyamathira Njoroge, throwing the court into confusion regarding the bona fide claimant.
Each of the two women were in court to challenge the cash freeze suit filed by the Assets Recovery Agency (ARA), bringing into question the identity of the real Nyamathira.
The development rendered Justice Maina into confusion as the two women instructed different lawyers to represent them.
This forced Justice Maina to direct the two ladies to appear at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) offices to determine their real identities.
Come Tuesday and lawyer Farady Nyangoro from Maosa and Nyangoro Company Advocates, and their client were nowhere to be seen in court on Tuesday as the real Nyamathira appeared in court virtually with her Belgian lover.
Owaga had told the court that the “real” Ms Felesta Nyamathira Njoroge had left the country six months earlier and had never returned. He told the court that the 21-year-old student instructed him to oppose the case filed by ARA, seeking to forfeit the money to the State.
On the other hand, another lawyer Thomas Maosa told the same court that Nyamathira had never left the country and had instructed him together with lawyer PLO Lumumba to oppose ARA’s case.
ARA had obtained an order freezing the accounts, pending conclusion of investigations into the source of the funds.
The woman had claimed that her boyfriend Marc De Mesel wired the money to her, indicating that she was free to use the funds to secure financial security for their children. “It is unfortunate we find ourselves in this situation. The real Felesta is out of the country and is heavily pregnant and she is due to give birth. We can present documents to support our position. We can present her to ARA depending on the medical advice and upon travelling back to the country,” Owaga had told the court.
Maosa on the other hand, had insisted Nyamathira never travelled out of the country. “We presented Felesta to ARA but they opted not to take her statement.”
“She is not out of the country. We are ready to present her again,” said Maosa.
Justice Maina froze the Sh102 million after ARA argued that it suspects that she was involved in money laundering.
Nyamathira later challenged the order saying there was nothing linking the money to illegal dealings. She said ARA’s application is speculative and against her economic rights and courts should not be used to assist the agency to interfere with her rights. The agency opposed the application to lift the order saying Nyamathira must demonstrate that she has suffered or will suffer hardship if the money remains frozen.
Documents filed in court showed that the Belgian wired $229,980 on August 4, followed by $231,980 the following day. On August 6, he wired the money twice, $224,980 and $227,980, alarming the state agency. The Belgian tycoon reveals details of Nyamathira’s striking beauty in the bulky documents filed at Milimani Law Court and how they met and fell in love instantly.
He has denied allegations that he is involved in an international money laundering syndicate. The documents also unmask Messel, a man who has left Kenyans in awe over his generosity to women he claims to have fallen in love with at first sight. “That the said Marc de Messel, who is my boyfriend, is a reputable and internationally-known investor. Famous for his early publicly-announced investments in Bitcoin in 2013 and Tesla in 2019,” some of the documents state.
In the documents, Messel says he came to Kenya in 2017, met his three girlfriends, transferred millions of shillings into their accounts and those of their relatives, had four children with them and eloped with the other while she was pregnant.
He names his girlfriends as Sarah Wambui Kamanda, with whom he sired a male child on June 28, 2019; Tebby Wambuku Kago, with whom they had two baby girls on September 8, 2018 and June 19, 2020; and Nyamathira, whom he describes as his favourite, and gave birth to a boy on February 22, 2022.