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Kenyan authorities have frozen accounts containing Sh45 million belonging to two Nigerian companies for allegedly laundering Sh6 billion into the country.
This decision, a result of two suits filed by the country’s Asset Recovery Agency (ARA), accused the companies of availing themselves to be used by fraudsters as a conduit for international money laundering. The court ruling was first reported by The Standard, a Kenyan media outlet.
The court ruled that funds found in an account belonging to Korapay Technologies Ltd at Equity Bank and two accounts belonging to Kandon Technologies Ltd at UBA should be frozen. The Korapay account is worth $249,565 (Sh29.5 million), and the Kandon accounts are worth a combined $126,841 (Sh15 million).
Korapay Technologies Limited has denied all allegations of money laundering. “We want to make very clear that the allegations from Kenya and the report from Standard KE are baseless and bordering on malicious,” a representative of the company told TechCabal in an email. The representative added that Korapy intends to release an official statement about the matter later today.
Korapay, a payment company founded in 2017 by Dickson Nsofor and Bryan Uyanwune, is a Techstars-backed company.
Headquartered in Canada, with its major market in Nigeria, Kora expanded to the UK last month and expressed similar ambitions for Kenya and South Africa. In February 2019, the company raised a pre-seed of $120,000, followed by an undisclosed seed in September of the same year.
A representative of Kandon told TechCabal that the company denied all allegations of financial impropriety and expressed is taking necessary legal steps.
“Every transaction we did in Kenya was fully compliant, we’re working directly with the banks who have carried out KYC on us and are aware of the nature of our transactions and our beneficiaries,” the representative said.
“This is an issue that has been ongoing for a while, we have been aware of this issue for months and we’re definitely taking legal actions. I believe we are going to be cleared because we have done nothing wrong, it feels like witch hunting .”
Suggested read: Nigeria’s Senate Passes Bill to Tighten Money Laundering Rules