Police question Bungoma politician over seized fake dollars, gold


• The, a politician based in Bungoma, has been missing since September 9 when his suspected accomplices were arrested in an operation in the area.

Crime Scene Tape
Image: FILE

A man linked to a haul of fake gold and US dollars that were seized by police in Garden Estate was Thursday questioned after surrendering.

The, a politician based in Bungoma, has been missing since September 9 when his suspected accomplices were arrested in an operation in the area.

He is linked to a house where the fake gold and dollars were found.

He walked to the DCI offices in the Nairobi Area armed with an anticipatory bail of Sh200,000 while in the company of two lawyers.

He had been wanted for grilling after the seizure of the fake gold and dollars in a house he was linked to.

In the anticipatory bail, Justice Diana Kavedza ordered the police to be at liberty to investigate or charge the applicant for any Criminal Conduct.

However, they shall not arrest or detain him in view of orders or until further orders of the court.

She directed that the applicant's advocates escort the applicant to the offices of the DCI for questioning and or interview on 21st September 2023.

"That upon such investigations, the DPP is at liberty to present any charge against the applicant in any court. Should a decision by the 1st respondent to charge the applicant be made, the 1st respondent shall inform the applicant of the court to which he should appear for plea taking, in which case, the court shall be at liberty to set new terms of bail and the order of this court shall automatically lapse,” read part of the order.

The judge directed the Bungoma politician to serve the respondents with the application and order within seven days from September 21 and upon service, the respondents are directed to file their respective responses within 10 days.

The matter shall be mentioned virtually on October 19, 2023, for directions.

Police said they will present him in court on Friday, September 22.

He joins a group of about 15 who were arrested in the probe into a fake Sh1 billion gold scam.

The operation that started on September 1 saved a Tunisian national Sh1 billion that he was to spend in the purchase of one tonne of fake gold and fake dollars.

He was getting stones packaged in metal boxes that were seized in a house in Garden estate.

DCI Director Amin Mohammed visited the crime scene at the Garden Estate area of Nairobi, where detectives impounded the fake gold and fake dollars used by scammers to defraud unsuspecting businessmen in a house converted into a high-end office.

The operation led to the arrest of 15 people, including a police officer attached to the DCI offices in Kitui.

Amin confirmed the probe is ongoing and decried the scammers are still out there despite the operations.

“The operation started all the way in Tunisia when they claimed they have the capacity of selling him gold...when he suspected and reported the matter and we embarked on the hunt,” said DCI Amin.

The victim had arrived in the country on September 2 and after almost an hour at a stop with no one to pick him up, he was convinced by a taxi driver that he would be delivered safely to his intended destination.

According to the victim, he was then driven to the Ngara area of Nairobi where he stayed incommunicado for a week when he was asked to come to the Garden Estate office.

He was to pay Sh400 million before being allowed to see the gold, and after smelting and verifying a sample, he was meant to pay the remaining Sh600 million, he told police.

Come Thursday, September 7, he did not show up alone.

Detectives raided the office, arresting the suspect's people while two others escaped, police said.

Waswa was missing. Amin said they are determined to deal with the menace.

“This is a huge cartel that likes to drop big names to intimidate officers, and they also operate in a very sophisticated manner,” said Amin.

He said they are pursuing leads on where the gang printed the fake money.

The papers were found stashed in metal boxes in one of the rooms there.

“Many victims have lost huge amounts of money,” added Amin.

The scammers set up fully fledged offices, to be used as the addresses to cut multimillion deals.

“Some pretend to be police officers, others KRA, others even custom officers complete with documentation that we have since discovered are fake documents,” said Amin.

Police have urged Embassies and High Commissions to advise their nationals coming in for business, that Kenya does not hold any huge consignments of gold.

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