A 28-year-old IT expert yesterday was charged with hacking into the Kenya Revenue Authority computer system and stealing Sh3.9 billion.

Alex Mutuku denied hacking into the KRA computer systems, when he appeared before chief magistrate Francis Andayi.

He will be remanded untilMarch 28, when the court will decide on bail.

The charge sheet says Mutuku committed the offence between March 1, 2015, and March 1 this year at unknown place, together with others not in court.

Yesterday representatives of the DPP’s office Edwin Okello and Eddie Kaddabe opposed his release on bail.

They said he is a flight risk, since he travels frequently.

If freed on bond, Okello said, the accused is likely to commit the same offence as he has an active criminal case in court related to cyber fraud.

The court heard there are indications from data extracted and analysed that Mutuku and accomplices were working with other suspects outside the country to remotely access critical information systems in national and financial institutions.

Okello and Kaddabe told the court that to provide quality evidence, police need at least 40 consecutive days to generate a forensic report.

The court heard that on March 7 this year, a multi-agency security operation was conducted in Nairobi after a tip that financial institutions and other key state institutions were losing cash through suspicious electronic transactions.

The operation led to the arrest of several suspects, among them Mutuku.

Also netted was a former police officer and international criminals, who had been colluding with locals to allegedly commit these crimes.

Apart from the KRA, other agencies targeted by these criminals include the National Transport and Safety Authority, saccos and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.

There are claims the suspects were planning to manipulate the IEBC system ahead of the August polls.

“There are fears their plans included hacking the IEBC system in conjunction with the Russians,” a police report said.