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Why no Kenyan bank wants to serve Edenville estate billionaire

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Can you imagine being turned down from all banks? That no Kenyan bank wants to serve you? That is the situation that Billionaire Samuel James Kinyanjui found himself in after banking fraud investigators issued orders to local banks to stop serving him.

The billionaire who is best know for his real estate ventures was forced to go to court to protest the blockade.

Samuel James Kinyanjui said in his petition that all banks he approached turned him away on grounds that he was listed as a person of conflict under the proceeds of crime and anti-money laundering law, which hurt his businesses.

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“I have been to several banks and have been informed that the first respondent has circulated my name under the Proceeds of Crime and Anti-Money Laundering Act and listed me under the anti-money laundering records,” he said in court documents.

According to the Business Daily, Samuel James Kinyanjui first ran into trouble with the anti-money laundering agency three years ago when investigators told the court of his suspected links with a network of US, Nigeria and South Africa-based individuals believed to have been helping him move large sums of money around the world as part of a laundering scheme.

“The businessman has significant interest in Kenya’s booming real estate sector that is part of the massive business empire he has built over a 50-year period. The Sh. 2 billion Edenville Estate in Kiambu and flower firm Torito Roses are some of his best known investments,” the daily said.

Phase One of Edenville Estate consists of 345 housing units, most of them villas priced at between Sh. 14.5 million and Sh. 18.5 million each. Hass Consult, a real estate manager, said in a past report that the units sold out in a record 10 months.

Phase Two of the project comprises 454 maisonettes, constructed at a cost of about Sh. 2 billion, and plans have been in place to build a third phase on a 36.5-acre piece of land.

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