Wed, Oct 17, 2018 - Page 16 News List

Keino given more time to report to police in graft case


Running great Kip Keino was given more time to report to police in Kenya after being one of seven current and former Olympic and government officials accused of corruption and misappropriating more than US$545,000 around the time of the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games.

The seven were ordered to report to police and appear in court on Monday, but Keino, a two-time Olympic champion, was one of four who did not.

A judge extended their deadline until 6am on Thursday and then ordered that they appear in court on Friday to enter pleas in response to charges of corruption and abuse of office.

The judge said that warrants for their arrest would be issued if they did not hand themselves in on Thursday.

Former Kenyan sports minister Hassan Wario is one of the suspects and also did not appear on Monday. The other two who did not appear were former sports ministry officials Harun Chebet and Patrick Nkabu.

The case relates to money to fund Kenya’s team at the Rio Olympic Games. It was allegedly embezzled and misused by Keino and the others. Keino was the head of the Kenyan Olympic Committee at the time.

The three who did appear in court were current Olympic committee secretary-general Francis Kinyili Paul, Rio team manager Stephen Arap Soi and former sports ministry official Richard Ekai.

They all denied the charges and were granted US$20,000 bail each.

Judge Douglas Ogoti said the trial would start on Nov. 16, when the 78-year-old Keino — one of the world’s most revered distance runners — would answer accusations that he is corrupt.

Kenya’s director of public prosecutions on Saturday announced that the seven should be charged with multiple counts of corruption and abuse of office.

The decision came after nearly two years of investigating allegations of corruption around Kenya’s 2016 Olympic team.

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