iA gang of 20 men Tuesday morning raided the Rukira Coffee Factory in Othaya, Nyeri County, and reportedly stole 31 bags of coffee worth an estimated Sh830,000.
This is according to factory chairman Newton Nderitu.
However, Othaya OCPD Joseph Mwika disputed the figure, saying that five to 10 bags of coffee were stolen from the coffee beds, two metres from the factory store.
It is said that the gang broke through the fence and entered the factory compound at around 3am and held captive four security guards.
According to Mr Nderitu, the four were detained in different places within the factory while one was rescued by the police after he was found injured tied up near the Momwe River in Othaya.
Only the coffee on the drying beds was stolen in the seemingly well-orchestrated raid, said Mr Nderitu, adding that the thieves stole 20 bags of P1 and 11 bags of P2 grades of coffee.
“What puzzles us is that the coffee that was stolen was wet, having been delivered by farmers last Tuesday,” he said.
He added that in order to carry out the theft, the thieves disabled the alarm system that is connected to the factory’s store but did not steal from there.
“The stores have clean coffee of P1 quality. Luckily for us, they did not touch it, otherwise it would have been a greater loss,” he said.
The injured guard found by the river bank was rushed to Othaya Referral Hospital for treatment.
Mr Mwika said police would continue holding the four guards to help them with investigations.
“We are holding the four watchmen in custody to aid in investigating the matter,” he said.