Kenya police raid mansion in drugs investigation

Written By: BBC/Oscar Nyagah
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Police in Kenya are searching the house of tycoon Ali Punjani in Mombasa in an ongoing drug-trafficking investigation that began in the US.

Three people have been arrested at the property including a Nepalese woman who says she is his wife, and two men – one a Nepalese national and the other Indian.

Mr Punjani is one of four people – including Kenyan brothers Baktash and Ibrahim Akasha – facing drug trafficking charges in New York.

 The fourth man, Vijay Goswami, identified Mr Punjani as an alleged rival drug dealer in Mombasa.

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Mr Punjani has not commented on the allegations against him.

The Akasha brothers pleaded guilty last year to several drug violations including a conspiracy to smuggle over 100kg of heroin and methamphetamine into the US.

The offences can lead to a life sentence, but the Akasha brothers reportedly entered a plea bargain in which they would reveal the identities of their fellow traffickers.

Mr Punjani’s lawyer, Jeff Asige, told journalists on Monday that his client was in India for medical treatment.

His family released a photo which appeared to show him lying on a hospital bed.
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