The Kenyan High Court has approved to the Asset Recovery Agency (ARA) to withdraw its final legal action against Flutterwave, marking the resolution of the company’s legal disputes in Kenya. This development comes after the court rejected the agency’s request to withdraw its second lawsuit against the Nigerian fintech in July 2023.
The legal conflict stemmed from accusations of money laundering and fraudulent activities, resulting in the freezing of over $3 million owned by Flutterwave, Hupesi Solutions, and Adguru Technology Limited in August 2022. However, subsequent investigations uncovered no evidence of wrongdoing by Flutterwave, prompting the ARA to retract the case.
In delivering the ruling, the presiding judge criticized the agency for initiating legal proceedings without completing its investigations, stating, “It was inappropriate, negligent, reckless, and absurd for an investigative agency to commence such serious proceedings without having completed investigations.”
“After considering all the facts presented to this court, the withdrawal is at this moment allowed, and this suit is marked as withdrawn,” he announced.
Nevertheless, the judge imposed a condition that the agency’s director and investigator bear any potential civil liabilities “solely and personally,” citing the negligent manner in which the case was investigated and pursued.
The company, confronted with delays in obtaining an operating license due to ARA lawsuits, had earlier expressed its desire to establish an office in Nairobi to facilitate its expansion in East Africa. The recent withdrawal of the last case against Flutterwave marks the conclusion of its legal challenges in Kenya.
Amid its struggles in the country, the ARA had frozen. Subsequently, it released funds on different occasions, including the initial freezing of $52 million and the subsequent release of $52.5 million after the withdrawal of the first case.
The recent withdrawal of the last case not only concludes Flutterwave’s legal issues but also allows the company to operate freely, pursue investments, and expand its presence in the region.
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