How to bail someone out of a Kenyan prison

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Once a person is arrested in Kenya, ask whether they can pay bail so they can continue with their daily chores. Similarly, when a person is arraigned in court for the first time, the court determines whether they can be released on bail, bond, or fines. If they have the money required, they can apply for release immediately. However, if the money is not available they will remain in custody until they raise the money.

This article will guide you on how to make bail/fine/bond payments in Kenyan courts.

Step-by-step guide on how to bail someone out

1.Go to the Criminal Registry office. When you visit the court where the charges were heard, look for the criminal registry office. Give them the name of the accused, date they were sent to prison and the crime they are charged with. This will help them retrieve the file faster. You will then be told the amount of cash bail you need to pay.

2. Proceed to the Cash office. The next step is to visit the court’s cash office to receive an official invoice with the name of the accused, case number, date and bail amount.

3. Go to the bank to deposit your fees. Nowadays, the courts do not allow cash payments but have partnered with KCB bank in handling fees and fines payments. The account details should be pinned somewhere at the cash office. If you cannot find them, ask the person processing your invoice. There could be a KCB agent at the court who can help you to deposit the fees. If there isn’t, you may have to visit the nearest branch or inquire from the cash office. It is also possible to pay your fees via Mpesa using the following guide obtained from the Makadara courts:

How to pay court fees and fines using MPesa

  • Go to MPesa menu
  • Select Paybill
  • Enter business number 522537
  • Enter court code, and case number. For instance, Makadara court code 323C, and case number 1234/2013. Ensure no gaps between court code and case number.
  • Enter amount
  • Enter PIN
  • Press send
  • You will receive an MPesa confirmation of money sent
  • You will receive an acknowledgement message from KCB
  • Get a receipt from the law court

4. After making the payments, you will proceed to the cash office where you will be given a form to fill. In this form, you will be asked to provide details of the accused and their next of kin. The details of the accused person required are; name, residence, phone number, nearest public school and nearest chief. The details of the next of kin required are; name, residence and phone number.

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5. Signing of the release order by a magistrate. This will be handled by the courts once they have confirmed that the accused person has no pending cases or warrants of arrest.

6. Obtain your signed release order and receipt of payment. The release order needs to have two signatures. That is what you present to the holding facility so they can release the accused.

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7. Present the release order and receipt to the holding facility. Go to the prison where the person is being detained and present them with the documents obtained from court. This will be used to release the accused who can then enjoy their freedom as the case hearing continues. You must obtain back your receipt as proof that you have paid the requested fees.

8. Continue with case hearings till it is determined. Once the case is complete, you can apply for a refund. Jumping bail will, however, lead to an arrest warrant against the accused, forfeiture of the bail money and also inability to enjoy bail in the future.

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