Mechanic Stares At Jailterm For ‘Eating’ Sh 130,000 Mistakenly Sent To Him Via MPESA

A mechanic who allegedly went into hiding after a customer accidentally sent Sh130,000 to his M-Pesa account has been charged with wilfully withholding the incorrectly delivered payment in violation of Section 35 of the Computer Misuse and Cybercrime Act of 2018.

Leonard Oyiri, 53, is accused of withholding electronic payment of money sent to his M-Pesa account by Sadiq Abdi, who was to pay him Sh13,000 on August 13 at his workshop in Kayole, Nairobi.

Abdi was looking for a car seat in the area when he met Oyiri, who offered to help him find one in his workshop.

Oyiri showed him a seat he liked, and they agreed on a price of Sh12,300, with Abdi offering to tip him Sh700, bringing the total amount he was to send him to Sh13,000.

He accidentally added an extra digit to his Sh13,000 and ended up sending Sh130,000 instead of Sh13,000.

Oyiri allegedly went into hiding after receiving the money, prompting Abdi to report the incident to Kayole Police Station.

Police officers went to the suspect’s house but were unable to locate him and had the house locked. When Oyiri returned to the house, he was arrested.

During the investigation, the accused told the police that he had received the money, but that Abdi had transferred more money to him many hours after he had left.

He stated that he had been expecting a call from the complainant but had not received one and was unable to make it because he did not have his contacts.

Oyiri told the police that he went to Njoro, Nakuru County, to meet his family, pay his children’s school fees, and settle arrears on a piece of land he was purchasing.

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He also stated that he visited his other family in Siaya before returning to Nairobi, having spent all of the money, and that he requested permission to pay Abdi once he received the money.

Oyiri, on the other hand, denied the charges before Makadara Law Courts Senior Principal Magistrate Hellen Okwani and pleaded for lenient bail and surety, claiming he had two wives and nine children who were all dependent on him.

Ms Okwani released him on Sh50,000 cash bail.