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Cops recover gold, millions in fake dollars from Cameroonians in Ruiru

Two of the suspects were found to be in the country illegally while the third holds a refugee identity card.

In Summary

• Detectives based in Ruiru Monday recovered more Sh350 million in fake US dollars and Pounds after arresting three Cameroon nationals in an operation.

• In an operation conducted within BTL area in Ruiru, Kiambu County, the detectives also recovered over 250 kilograms of fake gold nuggets and gold bars.

DCI detectives have recovered over Sh350 Million in fake US dollars and Pounds, a Glock pistol and 28 rounds of ammunition in Ruiru.
DCI detectives have recovered over Sh350 Million in fake US dollars and Pounds, a Glock pistol and 28 rounds of ammunition in Ruiru.
Image: DCI

Detectives based in Ruiru Monday recovered more Sh350 million in fake US dollars and Pounds after arresting three Cameroon nationals in an operation.

The officials said they also recovered a Glock pistol and 28 rounds of 9mm calibre from the foreigners.

The suspects, Paulin Francis Proper and Njikam Omar were found to be in the country illegally while the third suspect Job Kentong, holds a refugee identity card.

In an operation conducted within BTL area in Ruiru, Kiambu County, the detectives also recovered over 250 kilograms of fake gold nuggets and gold bars.

Upon further interrogation of Paulin Francis who is the main suspect, detectives raided his house in Muthaiga North, Nairobi where the firearm was recovered.

Detailed investigations revealed that the firearm belonged to a fourth suspect Loise Kaguongo, who was holding it illegally since her firearms license had expired.

Kaguongo operates over 10 mobile money outlets and detectives believe that she is the link between the suspects and the wider criminal syndicate that is defrauding unsuspecting members of the public.

Ruiru head of DCI Justus Ombati said the fake money was in denominations of 100 dollars, 50 pounds and one thousand Kenya shilling notes.

DCI detectives have recovered over Sh350 Million in fake US dollars and Pounds, a Glock pistol and 28 rounds of ammunition in Ruiru.
DCI detectives have recovered over Sh350 Million in fake US dollars and Pounds, a Glock pistol and 28 rounds of ammunition in Ruiru.
Image: DCI

Police suspect that the illegal production of fake currencies could be happening elsewhere before the fake money is transported for storage in Ruiru before it’s distributed to unsuspecting persons.

This came a day after police in Nyali, Mombasa said they also recovered fake currencies from two foreign nationals.

Police said the two Jamil Salman Abdul, 43 and Tesfawork Ermias Dogso, 30, were also found to be operating within the country illegally.

The two had 198 forged Euro notes in 100 denominations, hidden between the driver's and co-drivers seats.

This comes just two days after police officers arrested two men found in possession of fake currencies worth Sh750 million.

The men identified as Samuel Maina and Boniface Mungai were arrested from an apartment in the Kilimani area where they had kept the fake papers in Kenyan, US and Euro bills.

The money was kept in metal boxes.

Police say they recovered chemicals and fake badges bearing names of UN, Della Rue and National Treasury and several safes.

According to police, they also recovered bags, machines, two bottles and jerrycans containing an unknown liquid, assorted documents, customs reflector jackets, stickers and stamps for various offices with their seals.

Cases

Cases of handling of fake money have in the past months been on a decrease due to police operations.

Dozens of suspects have in the past months been arrested in connection with the incidents and charged in court.

In September 2019, Sh300 million fake money was found abandoned on the roadside along Ngong Road, Nairobi.

In May 2019, nine suspects were arrested in the Kilimani area and fake Sh190 million ($1.9M) recovered from them.

This came two days after another group of seven was nabbed with fake Sh300million in a house in the same area.

Police investigations show counterfeit banknotes remain the top form of fraud for the increasingly growing mobile money and bank agents in Kenya.

In June 2017 Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) acknowledged the possibility of a transnational fake currency ring in Nairobi and the region.

CBK and other East African Community (EAC) central banks held a joint meeting with the Eastern Africa Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (EAPCCO) in September 2016 to develop strategies for enhancing the fight against counterfeit crime, one of the emerging transnational crimes.

The bank regulator had conducted a survey in 2017 that showed 97 per cent of fraud faced by the agents involved fake notes.

The February 27, 2019 discovery of a cache of fake foreign cash amounting to Sh32 billion in a residential house in Ruiru town was the biggest incident that followed a series of similar cases in the past few years.

In June 2018, the High Court in Nairobi condemned a Niger and Cameroonian nationals to 10 years in jail for possession of an estimated Sh110 billion in counterfeit currency.

The two were also in possession of tools for making fake banknotes. The trial took two-and-a-half years, following the foreigners’ arrest in Nairobi’s Diamond Park II in 2016.

On March 19, 2019, police seized fake Sh2 billion in a safety box at Barclays Bank, Queensway branch.

On October 1, 2018, police in Nairobi recovered fake money valued at Sh1 billion. Three suspects were nabbed. The money was found in a house along Brookside drive at Brookside gardens in Westlands.

Two days later police arrested a Nigerian national in South B and seized fake US dollar bills of USD251, 400 (about Sh25.3 million).

Two suspects were arrested at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) in October 2016 with fake Sh267 million euro notes of 500 bills on their way to Dubai.