Sunday, August 25, 2013

Kenya seeks warrants for Interpol suspects

A screen grab of the Interpol website on August 24, 2013.

A screen grab of the Interpol website on August 24, 2013. 

By ZADOCK ANGIRA
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By ISAAC ONGIRI
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Interpol Kenya has written to countries where about 20 Kenyans on a global wanted persons list are suspected to be hiding and asked them to issue international warrants of arrest.

Inspector-General of Police David Kimaiyo said once the suspects, who are on the International Police Organization’s Red Notice, are located, they will ask for extradition documents, that are normally passed through the respective countries’ embassies, to facilitate action.

“Kenya will cooperate with Interpol in mounting a search for the fugitives and already efforts are in place to trace them,” Mr Kimaiyo told the Nation.

Businessman Yagnesh Devani, currently in Britain, and two terror suspects — Fahid Mohammed Ally Msalam and Sheikh Ahmed Salim Swedan — from Majengo in Mombasa are among those on the Interpol red notice. Another prominent fugitive is Kisumu businessman and politician Jim Roberts Agengo.

Mr Devani has been fighting attempts to extradite him from the UK while Mr Msalam and Mr Swedan are believed to be hiding in Afghanistan.

Mr Devani is the mastermind of the multi-billion shilling Triton Oil scandal and was charged in absentia for stealing Sh955,334,094  from Kenya Commercial Bank, and 26,216.6 tonnes of oil at the Kipevu storage facility in Mombasa valued at Sh1,532,272,140.

CRIMINAL CASE WITHDAWN

The criminal case against him was later withdrawn under Section 87 of the Criminal Procedure Code. This means the same charges can be brought against him again.

The scandal can be traced to 2008 when Triton was allowed by Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) to collect oil valued at Sh7.6 billion and sell it without permission of the financiers.

In the wake of the fuel shortage witnessed in 2008 and following complaints by oil marketers and financiers, KPC ordered an internal audit of oil stocks in its systems.

The audit revealed that stocks amounting to 126.4 million litres were irregularly released to Triton Petroleum Limited between November 2007 and November 2008.

Mr Msalam and Mr Swedan have been placed on a list of individuals blacklisted under the US Specially Designated Nationals (SDNs).

Assets of such people are frozen and Americans are prohibited from dealing with them.

The two had their names included in the FBI list of “most wanted” terrorists in December 1998 over their alleged role in the bombing of US embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam.

The pair also have a $5 million (Sh440 million) bounty on their heads, according to the official FBI website.

Mr Kimaiyio said once the formal warrants re issued by the respective countries, they will pass through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the offices of the Attorney-General and Director of Public Prosecutions, before the demanded arrests can be executed.

On Sunday the Nation established that some of the wanted Kenyans are enjoying freedom in the country despite the police pledging to cooperate with Interpol.

Mr Kenneth Njagi, who alongside Mr Ernest Kangara and Mr Ervin Somba are wanted for tax evasion and wire-fraud in the United States, is car dealer at Mwanzi Road-Ukay Centre.

FBI has listed 10 Kenyans in Interpol’s Red Alert for fraud, sexual offences, murder and related charges.

Those wanted by the US authorities include Mr Agengo, Mr Benjamin Kaviti, Mr Joseph Karanja, Mr Kangara, Mr Somba, Mr Edwine Sila and Mr Christopher Olalo. Mr Agengo is said to be in the country after allegedly evading arrest in the US.

Other than the US, other countries have also reported Kenyans wanted for committing various crimes in their territories.

In Rwanda, Mr Nathan Lyod Ndungu, 43, is listed in the Interpol’s list of wanted persons for fraud, while Uganda is looking for Mr John Mochama for forgery. Mr Peter Gachako is facing defilement charges in Botswana.

Charges related to motor vehicle theft have put Mr Stephen Musundi from Bungoma on the spot while Mr Herman Muita Gichure, 33, a former matatu driver, is wanted for causing death by dangerous driving.

An Indian residing in Kenya, Mr Harbans Singh Gakhal, 59, is wanted by the Indian authorities to serve a jail term for illegal human trafficking, forgery and cheating.
Indian authorities believe Mr Gakhal from Jalandar, Punjab in India, is hiding in the country.

Kenya has also listed Ms Miriam Achieng Kadongo, 34, from Nakuru who is suspected to be hiding in Finland, for obtaining credit by false pretences, uttering a false document, and issuing bad cheques.

THE WANTED KENYANS

  1. Mr Yagnesh Devani
  2. Mr Jim Roberts Agengo
  3. Mr Kenneth Njagi
  4. Mr Ernest Kangara
  5. Mr Ervin Somba
  6. Mr Benjamin Kaviti
  7. Mr Joseph Karanja
  8. Mr Edwine Sila
  9. Mr Christopher Olalo
  10. Mr Nathan Lyod Ndung’u
  11. Mr John Mochama
  12. Mr Peter Gachako
  13. Mr Stephen Musundi
  14. Mr Herman Muita Gichure
  15. Ms Miriam Achieng Kadongo
  16. Fahid Mohammed Ally Msalam
  17. Sheikh Ahmed Salim Swedan
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