CYBER DETECTIVES

American in Echesa scam worked with Nyeri county

Eco Advanced Technologies was visited by Nyeri officials before 2017

In Summary

• Eco Advanced Technologies and Stanley Kozlowski do not appear big enough to handle a Sh39 billion surveillance contract

• Yesterday cyber detectives scrutinised CCTV footage and email records at the Harambee House annex of the DP

Former Sports CS Rashid Echesa at JKIA court on Friday, February 14, 2020.
Former Sports CS Rashid Echesa at JKIA court on Friday, February 14, 2020.
Image: MERCY MUMO

Stanley Kozlowski, the principal figure in the alleged Rashid Echesa security scam, claims to have worked on agriculture projects with Nyeri county before 2017.

Kozlowski, 55, of Lake Zurich, Illinois, is the manager and vice-president of Eco Advanced Technologies (EAT)  which allegedly paid a Sh11.5 million bribe to former Sports minister Echesa to secure a Sh39.5 billion secure communications contract with the Department of Defense.

An internet search casts serious doubt over whether Kozlowski had the capacity to deliver even if he had won the contract. He appears to be a small-time American radio communications contractor trying to build up a presence in Kenya.

 

On the EAT website, which mainly concentrates on agriculture, there is a photo claiming to show former Nyeri speaker David Mugo and former Nyeri trade executive Stan Miano visiting EAT in America “to pursue Controlled Environment Agriculture with Integrated Power for Kenya”. The website says EAT is based in Elgin, Illinois, and Nairobi, Kenya.

Yesterday Mugo, now a judge, said he was in the US for a niece's wedding when Miano notified them that he was there.

"They invited me to see their aquaculture which is a greenhouse doing fish and vegetables all in the same farm. So we went and saw. But after that nothing happened," he said.

The current Nyeri Agriculture executive James Wachihi said he had no knowledge of EAT or any deal with Nyeri. Miano declined to comment.

Eco Advanced Technologies website describing the visit of Nyeri officials to their advanced greenhouse before 2017
EAT website Eco Advanced Technologies website describing the visit of Nyeri officials to their advanced greenhouse before 2017

Another EAT website offers an integrated security system for governments called Firegate but gives no contact details or additional information. The website also has photos of Enstrom helicopters. On the Enstrom website, EAT is not listed as an authorised dealer for either the USA or Africa.

The main EAT website is hosted by KCI Communications which is owned by Kozlowski. The KCI website says it represents Motorola products and specialises in mobile digital video. It appears to have done some work for local police forces in the USA but no work with governments. KCI has a small but modern warehouse at 1050 Ensell Road, Lake Zurich, Illinois.

 

 

Echesa reportedly went to Warsaw, Poland in October to visit Kozlowski and see some equipment. Pictures have circulated in Nairobi of Echesa and Kozlowski looking at a small drone and some electronic equipment in a shed.  Howells Investment in Warsaw has Kozlowski listed as a director but it appears to be a fiduciary shell company managed by a British citizen, Christian Gaunt. An Internet search revealed no details about Howells or its other director Peter Francis Zasadzien.

 

Internet searches turned up no information about Kozlowski’s Egyptian partner Mamdouh Mostafa Amer Lofty who entered Kenya on a tourist visa and who has also been helping DCI with their investigations.

Detectives from the DCI's Cyber Crime Unit yesterday spent hours at Deputy President William Ruto's Harambee Annex office. 

The detectives reviewed CCTV footage of 23-minute visit by Echesa, Kozlowski and Mostafa to the DP's Second Floor office on February 13. Echesa was arrested 15 minutes after using the boardroom.

Deputy President William Ruto was not present at the meeting and had not been officially notified of Echesa's visit.

 

The officers went to the CCTV control room manned by GSU to piece together a timeline of the visit with the assistance of technicians from the local supplier. They want to ensure that no footage was deleted.

According to a DCI detective, the cyber police are also analysing emails in computers used at Harambee House Annex with the support of Interpol.

"We want to get data from select computers to see if there was any communication between the office and the complainants," said the detective.

Police want to know if Echesa's accomplices sent out or received any messages from EAT.

The detectives want to identify a female MP from Mt Kenya who could have convinced Kozlowski to enter into negotiations and who may have accompanied Echesa to the DP's office for the meeting.

When he was arrested last Thursday, Echesa was found with military tender documents for the supply of guns, ammunition, bulletproof vests and surveillance equipment.

 

The documents, now established as fake, purported to be signed by Defence CS Monica Juma.

Kozlowski said last year he received an email purportedly from the Department of Defence asking for a quotation for their military supplies.