Armed, dangerous and on the run: Kenya’s most wanted fugitives

What you need to know:

  • Their other crimes include obtaining huge amounts of money by false pretences and stealing by servant.

The list of Kenya’s most wanted persons includes some hardcore criminals described by detectives as “armed and dangerous”. The gallery of fugitives seen by the Nation includes those wanted for engaging in terrorism, fake gold and firearms deals, illegal oil scams, arson, sale of wildlife products, drugs and ivory trafficking.

Their other crimes include obtaining huge amounts of money by false pretences and stealing by servant. Yet these people are suspected to be hiding within the communities – in plain sight – while trying to avoid being captured by the police despite some of them having huge bounties on their heads.

Following enquiries by the Nation, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) has exclusively revealed the identities of the country’s most-wanted fugitives. Some of them are international criminals whose warrants of arrest have been issued by Interpol for crimes committed within and beyond the borders.

Some of the fugitives are believed to be hiding in Kenya and others abroad. Anyone who sees them is requested to contact the nearest police station, report to the DCI or Interpol’s regional office in Nairobi.

Many others are wanted across the country

However, DCI boss George Kinoti noted that the list does not include those wanted at the county and police station level.

“Many others are wanted across the country to face murder, robbery with violence and other serious and capital offences,” said the DCI while also noting that an order from the court stopping them from publishing photos of arrested suspects has become a big hindrance in their efforts to fight crime.

“It is absurd that across the world,  no agency is prevented from publishing a picture of someone who has been arrested except in Kenya,” Mr Kinoti told the Nation. “Some of the suspects in this list have been arrested before and are serial criminals out there continuing to commit murder and rape, but no one knows what they look like,” he said.

Here is a list of Kenya’s most-wanted persons.

Abid Hussein Ahmed

Ahmed is said to be an accomplice of Abubakar Mansour Mohammed Surur, an ivory and drugs dealer who was arrested on Wednesday this week by DCI detectives based at Moi International Airport after landing from Yemen aboard a chartered flight.

Mansour was handed over to Interpol officers for further action.

Abid and Mansur had been flagged as wanted persons by the United States for engaging in large scale trafficking and sale of wildlife trophies from Africa to the US and South East Asia as well as engaging in drug trafficking and money laundering.

Abid is wanted by local authorities for trafficking ivory and drugs.

Maherab Warji and Mohd Abdalla

Two international arrest warrants have been issued against Mr Warji and Mr Abdalla, the president and director of Walam Incorporation Limited, a company that had been contracted by the Ministry of Energy to explore geothermal resources at the Suswa geothermal fields in 2007.

The licence, signed by Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi, the then Energy minister, gave Walam exclusive rights to explore, drill for, extract, produce and dispose geothermal steam and other resources for a period of 30 years.

The licence was, however, cancelled in 2012 following a delayed start of the exploitation works caused by the company’s lack of capacity to carry out the massive project. Following its cancellation, the company sued the government at the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in 2015 in London, claiming $600 million as compensation for the cancellation of the licence.

A statement by the office of the Attorney General says that the government revoked the licence in October 2012 after reaching the conclusion that the company had not performed its duties under the licence and did not have the capacity to undertake the works required.

Kenya also raised objections about the company’s nationality. It had presented itself as a Canadian company for purposes of being granted the licence.

Later the company changed its position to claim it relied upon its incorporation in the United States of America as the basis for arbitration by ICSID. Canada had not ratified the convention on settlement of investment disputes by ICSID by the time the licence was revoked.

The two are wanted for the offences of making documents without authority and attempting to obtain money by false pretences. This is after earlier this month the ICSID ruled in favour of Kenya and agreed that the country has the right to revoke the licence. Consequently, Walam Energy Inc was ordered to pay close to Sh500 million in suit costs.

Jefwa Samuel Bakari and Nicholas Mweri Jefwa

The two are subjects of an Interpol wanted persons red notice for illicitly dealing in wildlife trophies and organised criminal activity.

A red notice is an official description of a wanted person containing a request for his or her arrest with a view to extradition.

It is issued by Interpol at the request of a member country or international tribunal and distributed to all member states. It is the closest instrument to an international arrest warrant in use today.

Interpol made its first arrest appeal to the two in 2016, a year after they were linked to 511 pieces of ivory that were seized in Thailand.

Born in Mombasa, 30-year-old Bakari and his brother, 45, have been described by the police as part of a criminal cartel involved in ivory trade within East Africa and the great lakes region and are believed to be hiding outside the country.

Once arrested, they will face two counts of dealing with wildlife trophies without a licence and engaging in organised criminal activity once arrested.

Yagnesh Devani

Yagnesh Devani, the architect of the Sh7.6 billion Triton scandal who is hiding in the United Kingdom, from where he is fighting to stop his extradition to Kenya. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

The architect of the Sh7.6 billion Triton scandal is hiding in the United Kingdom where he is fighting to stop his extradition to Kenya.

The businessman has filed a case at the Supreme Court in the UK challenging an earlier ruling by the appeal court that supported his extradition.

“If Devani loses the case at the Supreme Court, he will be on the first flight home so he faces trial for the crimes which he committed,” Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji said in an earlier interview with the Sunday Nation.

Jean Emmanuel Marlon

The Spanish national, who appeared at the Milimani Law Courts in July last year to answer to conspiracy to defraud charges, is wanted by Kenyan authorities to answer to charges of obtaining money by false pretenses.

In the court case, Marlon was accused of conspiring with others to defraud Iron and Steel DMCC Director Italiana Antonio Cianci (from Dubai) of Sh14 million in pretence that he would sell to him genuine gold bars.

The court heard that he was pretending to be involved in legal sale of gold at an office named Duaf International Limited along Riverside Drive in Nairobi. He was released on bond.

Zekeriya Oner

In 2018, Zekeriya Oner and one Oner Mehmet Ihsan obtained orders preventing the police from detaining and deporting them after they received reports that Turkey had sought the assistance of Interpol and local authorities to aid in their arrest and extradition.

The two told the court that they were Turkish businessmen, who alongside their wives, were lawfully residing and validly investing in Kenya.

They said their impending arrest on grounds that they were affiliated to the political Hizmet and Gulen movements in Turkey were false.

They also told the court that they were being accused of involvement in an attempted coup in Turkey on July 15, 2016.

For its part, the prosecution said Kenya had received a notice from Interpol on the applicants and interpreted the matter as relating to terrorism, hence its decision to arrest them and question them for two days, after which the two were released after it emerged that the matter was political in nature.

The two were released on an anticipatory bail of Sh50,000 each, pending appearance in court should the police be of the opinion that they should be charged for a criminal offence.

Interpol’s rules strictly forbid its officials from undertaking an intervention or activities of a political, military, religious or racial character.

Officers involved in the case, however, told the court that they had reached a conclusion that if a further request was received from Interpol in Ankara,  they would proceed to trace and arrest the two businessmen.

Zekeriya is now wanted by Turkey for terrorism-related charges.

Abdirizak Yussuf Adow

Adow is being sought by detectives to answer to the arson incident at Malik Heights building on Ngong Road in June last year, during which property worth Sh600 million was destroyed.

He is the main suspect behind the deadly fire, but has since gone into hiding after making a false statement at Kilimani Police Station on the same day the fire occured.

CCTV footage from the building captured a man walking into the building carrying a jerrican believed to have contained petrol. The man is seen proceeding to the parking area where he sprinkled the contents of the jerrican and lit a fire before leaving through the staircase.

Rose Odongo Omamo

She is wanted for dealing in fake gold and fire arms.

Evans Njogu Musa

The Kenyan national is wanted by Zambian authorities for stealing by servant. He is believed to be hiding in the country.

George Kirangu

He is wanted by Rwandese authorities for obtaining money by false pretences.

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