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January 17, 2019

Police probe lottery firm over Sh93 million fraud.

PRIZE: One of the cars that was to be won by participants of the Shinda Smart 6969 lottery outside Westage Shopping Mall in Nairobi on January 2011. The lottery ran into trouble with the law.Photo/FILE
PRIZE: One of the cars that was to be won by participants of the Shinda Smart 6969 lottery outside Westage Shopping Mall in Nairobi on January 2011. The lottery ran into trouble with the law.Photo/FILE

Detectives are investigating allegations that a lottery firm Amaya Gaming Group (K) popularly known as M-Lotto Kwachu Mamili embezzled more than Sh98 million meant for a Nyanza-based charity organisation. The investigators last week obtained an order to freeze the firm's accounts until investigations are complete. The detectives have demanded records for money collected between February 19 and June 14, 2011.

Two years ago, the Central Bank of Kenya, CID and Betting Control and Licensing Board shut down another lottery game over alleged fraud. The detectives from the Nairobi provincial police headquarters are scrutinising the lottery firm's three accounts at NIC Bank following complaints by the Lions Heart Self-Help Group national coordinator David Onyango Aroa over the loss of the funds.

According to the investigations, Aroa is said to have approached Amaya Gaming Group to raise funds through a lottery for the construction of an educational centre for orphans in Wagai in Siaya. The accepted the request and applied for and were issued with license number 2665 by the Betting Control and Licensing Board to collect the money. The license stipulated that 25 per cent of the lottery's gross profit would be paid to Lions Heart Self Help Group for building the educational centre.

However, after four months of collection, Amaya Gaming Group officials allegedly called the charity organisation's officials to Nairobi and offered them Sh3 million, which was rejected. The lottery company later issued the charity organisation with a Sh28 million cheque through their lawyer. Amaya Gaming Group, then filled returns to the Betting Control and Licensing Board claiming to have collected Sh80 million, a claim refuted by the charity organisation.

Aroa's group claims that more than Sh400 million was collected. " The monies held by Amaya Gaming Group at accounts CA2-120007253, CA2-1200007252, CA2-120600001, GS-1800000900 and FA-23260001892 at NIC Bank, NIC House branch are proceeds of the lottery," says an affidavit filed by police. The detectives say it is critical to obtain information on the accounts because it assist the ongoing investigations.

The detectives says initial investigations have confirmed that that the tentative amount due to the lottery as per records is approximately Sh93,978,112.50. They have obtained a court order temporarily freezing the accounts until investigations are complete. The investigators are seeking information on Amaya Gaming Group(K) Limited's account numbers CA2-1200007253,CA21200007252,CA2 120600001, GS 1800000900 and FA-23260001892 held at the NIC Bank. The detectives insist that the monies in the accounts are proceeds of lottery which are being withheld from the beneficiaries House branch.

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