KDF soldier who received bribes from potential recruit jailed

A Kenya Defence Forces soldier was Monday jailed for five–and-a-half years for collecting bribes of over Sh. 500,000 meant to aid in the recruitment of a youth into the military.

Fred Kiptum Kiplagat was found guilty of receiving bribes in two tranches of Sh300,000 and Sh102,500 to aid one Brian Kipkemoi to get recruited into KDF in April this year.

A court martial sitting at Lang’ata Barracks heard that the soldier obtained the first tranche of Sh300,000 from Mr Charles Kipkoris on April 4 in order to help his son in getting recruited to KDF, and the second tranche of Sh102,000 from the son to influence the process.

On Monday, the court found the soldier guilty of obtaining the money by false pretence, desertion of duty and issuing a fake KDF calling letter.

Consequently, senior Principal Magistrate Bernard Ochoi convicted Kiptum to four years in jail for the first count and second count respectively, a one-year jail term for issuing a fake calling letter to the complainant and an additional six years in prison for deserting his place of work for 90 days without official leave until his arrest on May 3, 2021.

The magistrate directed that all the charges run concurrently.

Imposter arrested

On Saturday, a Mr Isaac Serem, who was disguising as a KDF service personnel, was arrested on suspicion of recruitment fraud after he was found in possession of a fake recruitment letter.

According to KDF, the suspect was attempting to con a female victim of Sh400,000 in the pretext of securing her daughter a slot in the recently concluded KDF countrywide recruitment which ended on November 26.

KDF had warned Kenyans against any attempt to present fake academic documents or bribery in a bid to join the military.

“Please note that no KDF calling letter will be issued outside the designated recruitment centre. Kenyans are advised that bribery and other acts of corruption are against the law and should anyone give a bribe during this exercise, [they] will have themselves to blame,” Vice Chief of Defence Forces Lieutenant General Francis Ogolla said at the time.

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