Keroche Breweries CEO Tabitha Karanja and her husband Joseph Karanja were on Friday released on cash bail after they pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of tax fraud.
Appearing before Nairobi Chief Magistrate Francis Andayi, the two and Keroche Breweries Limited were charged with evading taxes amounting to Sh14.4 billion.
Mrs. Karanja was freed on a cash bail of Sh10 million while Mr. Karanja was granted Sh2 million bail. The court noted that the couple’s bail terms would be different due to Mr. Karanja’s health status.
“Joseph Karanja is to pay cash bail Sh2 million within seven days while Mrs. Karanja should pay Sh10 million immediately,” Magistrate Andayi ruled.
Keroche Breweries was ordered to pay Sh10 million cash bail within seven days, failure to which all the directors would be arrested.
The court said that the two do not pose a flight risk since they are investors in the country, hence no need to surrender their passports. They were, however, ordered to inform the court before traveling.
The couple was arrested by detectives from Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) on Thursday at Keroche Breweries in Naivasha.
While ordering their arrest, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji said an audit by Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) established that the two, through Keroche Breweries, failed to remit excise duty and value-added tax (VAT) on its various beer products between January 2015 and June 2019.
He further said there was sufficient evidence to charge the couple and Keroche Breweries Limited with 10 counts of tax fraud.