US Anglo Leasing witness disowns EACC evidence
Questions emerged yesterday over the credibility of an American witness in the Anglo Leasing suit after he disowned court documents linking him to security tenders and his jailing over tax evasion in the US.
Bradley Birkenfeld yesterday, through video conference, rejected records indicating that he had in 2013 signed some of the security supplies associated with Anglo Leasing contracts.
He also denied any link with Infotalent—one of the companies that supplied security items to government, under the contracts, saying he was neither a director nor a shareholder.
The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) on April 21, 2015 disclosed to the court that Mr Birkenfeld, 51, signed crucial documents as the managing director of Infotalent.
Mr Birkenfeld said his responsibility as director of UBS bank, in Geneva Switzerland was to acquire and advice clients with deposits of more than $1 million (Sh102 million).
The banker said that he met some of the accused persons while working at the bank where they had deposited $16 million (Sh1.6 billion).
“I don’t know who prepared the contract even though I can see it has my name and home address,” Mr Birkenfeld.
Lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi for defence put him to task, questioning his credibility and why the court should believe him given he had been jailed for 30 months by an American court after pleading guilty to tax evasion.
“Having been convicted by a competent court in America, is it not true you are a witness in this case so that you avoid being tried?” posed lawyer Abdullahi, adding that his testimonies were rejected in Canada.
Mr Birkenfeld, who was initially a suspect in the Anglo Leasing suit, has declined to testify personally in Kenya citing security fears.
The court allowed him to testify via video conference from a UK court.
Mr Abdullahi said that Mr Birkenfeld was converted to a witness by the prosecution following an agreement that he implicates other people in exchange for his freedom.
In the suit, former senior government officials and businessmen have been charged in connection with multibillion-shilling security tenders that the government cancelled as irregular.