DN International boss arrested in Kenya over decade-old real estate scam in Rwanda | The new times
Nathan Lloyd Ndung’u, the owner of the defunct DN International, a real estate development company, was arrested in Nairobi for a fraud case he is the subject of in Rwanda.
According to a report by Kenya’s Business Daily, which is owned by the Nation Media Group, Ndung’u was arrested this week as he arrived in Nairobi from a foreign country.
He is the subject of an Interpol red notice following a case in which he was tried in Rwanda and sentenced in absentia to five years in prison.
This was after he was convicted of defrauding buyers of a real estate project by his company.
Ndung’u, whose company DN International was involved in at least two residential housing projects, fled Rwanda in 2011 after an investigation was commissioned into allegations of fraud.
Reports say he was arrested as he disembarked from the United States and appeared in court in Nairobi on Wednesday, February 2.
The prosecution, led by Catherine Mwaniki, filed a request to detain him at the Inland Container Depot Police Station for 21 days, pending a formal extradition request from Rwanda.
However, through his lawyers, he opposed the detention, saying he should be released on bail.
The prosecutor opposed his release saying he was at risk of fleeing as he left Kenya while an international arrest warrant was still pending against him.
The prosecution argued that as a dual citizen, Ndung’u could return to the United States, where he also has citizenship.
According to her, this would distort the legal proceedings, in particular the fact that Rwanda does not have an extradition treaty with the United States.
The senior magistrate of the Milimani Court, Bernard Ochoi, is due to rule on the petition on February 4.
What led to his flight?
In 2010, DN International embarked on a project that would see the full construction of over 50 residential units worth RWF 75 million each.
The new owners, some of whom had already paid a deposit, were promised to have their homes by the end of the year.
However, the company’s project, dubbed “Green Park Villas“, remained incomplete, forcing Ndung’u to flee the country.
When the company folded, as the financier of the project, KCB seized the incomplete estate in a bid to recover a loan worth Rwf 1.5 billion which the developer had taken out to finance the estate.
But the bank did not bother to pay those who supplied the building materials or the future owners who had put down a deposit on the houses.
As a result, people who had delivered supplies and those who bought homes from the defunct DN International filed a lawsuit against the property developer.
The case also attracted the Kenya Commercial Bank and the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) demanding over 780 million Rwandan francs in compensation.