Briton charged with trafficking cocaine in Kenya in court

AP News
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Posted: Aug 08, 2016 9:58 AM
Briton charged with trafficking cocaine in Kenya in court

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A Kenyan court on Monday ruled that a British national charged with trafficking nearly 100 kilograms (220 pounds) of cocaine could be released on bond, but the country's High Court quickly suspended the decision.

The original decision said Jack Alexander Wolf Marrian had to raise a bond equaling $690,000, with two Kenyan sureties of similar amount. British media have reported that Marrian is the grandson of an aristocrat, the sixth Earl Cawdor.

His arrest came after Kenyan police and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents impounded the drugs July 27 at Kenya's main seaport in a container allegedly carrying sugar to Uganda from Brazil.

Kenyan Roy Francis Mwanthi, who was charged separately with trafficking the cocaine, was released on a bond equaling $296,000 or a surety of $592,000. The High Court also suspended that decision.

The High Court will hear arguments on Marrian's and Mwanthi's bail applications Tuesday.

A magistrate had ruled that the prosecution did not provide compelling reasons for Marrian to be detained pending determination of his case. Magistrate Derrick Kuto directed him to deposit his passport in court and report to police once a week. The prosecution had argued that he was a flight risk and would interfere with investigations.

But the High Court suspended that decision after the director of public prosecution, Keriako Tobiko, immediately appealed.

State Prosecutor Angella Okallo says Marrian through his company Mshale Commoditities Uganda LTD requisitioned 22 containers of sugar to be imported from Brazil and drugs were discovered in four of the containers. Mwanthi is a clearing and forwarding agent and a director of Inland Africa logistics, which was actively involved in clearing the containers.