A Kenyan woman in Kennesaw, Georgia has been arrested and charged with stealing more than $770,000 from the University of Connecticut by claiming to be a Dell Computers employee.
Authorities say 39-year-old Muthini Nzuki opened a personal bank account and changed the routing number that University of Connecticut uses to pay Dell through a third party. Between April 1st and May 31st of 2017, Nzuki was able to divert $773,079.35 in 32 different deposits that should have been paid to Dell into her personal account. According to the arrest warrant, Nzuki wrote 24 checks totaling $694,850 over the same period, drawn from the same account.
Nzuki was arrested on August 24th in Georgia and was extradited to Connecticut on Thursday, October 19th.
At her arraignment on Friday in Rockville Superior Court, Nzuki through her attorney said she was duped by some men from Kenya who said they needed to use her account to deposit $3 million in inheritance money from a relative in Connecticut.
“I don’t believe she was monitoring her daily banking transactions she believed that the transactions were legitimate and that the transactions were from a legitimate source in Connecticut that they were not involved in stealing money the state of Connecticut,” Attorney John O’Brien representing Nzuki told the court.
She’s not a very sophisticated lady, but clearly she’s been caught up in something that was not her intention to steal nearly a million dollars from the state of Connecticut,” added O’Brien.
Nzuki has been charged with first-degree larceny and first-degree computer crime. She is being held on $500,000 bond and will be required to surrender her passports. Her next court appearance will be on December 1st.
Records indicate that Nzuki is a dual citizen of Kenya and the United States, having been naturalized as a US citizen in 2010.