The Standard, Kenya
July 1 2006

Mystery of foreign impostors grows deeper



By PATRICK MATHANGANI and BIKETI KIKECHI

Real estate businessman Raju Sanghani took the witness box yesterday
morning on the third day of Shedrach Kiruki's Commission of Inquiry
sitting.

He told the Commission the story of how he was first introduced to
the Artur brothers as Arthur and James in Dubai and how he finally
hosted them in Kenya.

The following are excerpts from yesterday's sitting:

Dorcas: You have admitted that you are the one who introduced them to
Hon Kalonzo Musyoka. Apart from him, who else did you introduce them
to?

Sanghani: Introduced them to many people like; the lawyer and many
business friends. You see, like when we go to a restaurant for
example and we meet some people.

Dorcas: So is it right if I say that you introduced them to some
significant people in the country and you also introduced them to
some others?

Sanghani: If you can be more specific...

Dorcas: You also introduced them to other people? So if someone came
here and said I was introduced to these people by Mr Sanghani that
would be correct?

Sanghani: In the business world...

Dorcas: That's what I'm saying, if somebody came here who is a
businessman in Nairobi and say that I did not know these people but
were introduced to me by Mr Sanghani that would be correct.

Sanghani: It could be. Not everybody but some of them.

Dorcas: Now, this commission is concerned with their dealings in this
country, and I would like you to tell us what was your business in
Kenya?

Sanghani: As I said, I was looking for a business opportunity and an
opening when I first met them. It was not me who brought them here. I
want to verify that. It was Mr Zakir who brought them to Kenya and I
was introduced to the Artur brothers by Zakir. I saw some potential
in business, especially in the property line and I was basically
trying to see if I could take an opportunity and if I could get into
business.

Dorcas: So in the cause of the introduction, you introduced them as
who?

Sanghani: As I said, when Zakir introduced me to them he said they
were his business friends and they are from the royal family in
Armenia?

Dorcas: While in Dubai, did they take you to any of their investments
- to show you their factories whatever, whatever?

Sanghani: Yes they did. They took me to one of their steel factories.
Then they took me to some of their properties. They didn't show me
any titles. They looked like people with resources.

Dorcas: I want to show you a business card. And I want you to
sincerely tell the commission if you came across this card and if you
met somebody with this name when in Dubai or Kenya (shows him the
card).

Sanghani: Yes Hon commissioners, I have seen a card like this.

Dorcas: Go back to the photographs I gave you this morning. This is
Arthur Gervokyan?

Sanghani: I didn't realise I mean... I had seen the card, but I didn't
realise the second name... sorry but...

Dorcas: But you remember the second passport I was talking about
belongs to somebody Gevorkyan?

Sanghani: Yes

Dorcas: If you look at the email, it is [email protected]

Sanghani? Yes it is.

Dorcas: So, is it right if we say the name Artaq is also associated
with these people?

Sanghani: I believe so.

Dorcas: Now in this card, they were doing business in the style of
brothers' group of companies. Correct? Did you visit the headquarters
of this group of companies?

Sanghani: Yeah, but can I clarify my position here? I had this card;
I think I must even be having one. I have never called this number I
didn't see any need to. I always used to deal with Zakir.

Dorcas: Do you know anything about (the) brothers' group of
companies?

Sanghani: Not really . They showed me a few factories. I did not see
any sign of (the) brothers' group of companies.

Dorcas: After what you have told us this morning, and apart from the
press release, there is really no evidence that you disassociated
yourself from the dealing of these people.

Sanghani: All I can say is that I have not worked on their properties
after March. After my statement, I have not undertaken to... last I did
for them the housing scheme they wanted to put up in Mlolongo.

Dorcas: But you realise they still had your cars, you were still
paying rent on their behalf...

Sanghani: I'm not saying I was paying the rent. They used to give the
owner a banker's cheque.

Dorcas: So how would you describe your relationship with them?

Sanghani: As I said, I was looking... they wanted to build 3,000
houses. I wanted to become their agent, definitely like anybody else
could have. There were lots of estate agents who were actually
campaigning to get this project. So I just put it on hold and said
once it gets off the ground, I was ready to talk to them.

Dorcas: Of all the business ventures that you discussed, did any of
them materialise?

Sanghani: Lots of things happened in between, they were called names...
they were involved in so many other things so I just backed out.
There were also dealings with other agents... many other business
people besides me.

Dorcas: What was happening in the house? You went there once or
twice? Did anyone complain about any dealings in that house?

Sanghani: Not really. Somebody called our office to say there were a
lot of dogs and they were disturbing them at night.

Dorcas: How many people were living in that house?

Sanghani: I only used to go when this gentleman was in town. I never
even discussed any dealings with the so-called James or Margaryan. I
know like two of them and two of their brothers.

The commission resumes on Monday.