Governor Mike Sonko and 15 others have been allowed to approach the office of the director of public prosecutions (DPP) to settle a Sh357 million corruption case against them out of court via plea bargain.
Anti-corruption court chief magistrate Douglas Ogoti gave the go-ahead for the negotiations that if successful may see them avoid jail.
In a plea bargain the DPP can require forfeiture of property that is party to a suit or fines in exchange for lighter sentences or no jail time at all.
Defence lawyers Cecil Miller and George Kithi for Mr Sonko asked the magistrate to give room for plea bargain.
“Parties are allowed to approach the DPP for plea bargain but that process shall not interfere with the trial of the case. Report on the plea bargain is to be communicated to the court,” Mr Ogoti ruled.
Mr Sonko and his co-accused have denied the charges against them and are out on bond.
At the same time Mr Ogoti was informed one of the suspects, Patrick Mwangangi has passed on.
Mr Kithi informed the court about the demise of the suspect and a copy of the burial permit was presented to the magistrate.
Mr Ogoti was urged to order the withdrawal of the charges against the deceased but he asked the DPP to confirm the death then avail a report at the next hearing.