On Tuesday last week, undercover detectives from the Kilimani Police Station sent Sh50,000 to conmen purporting to be selling cars.
The detectives had been directed to deposit the amount as a commitment fee for the purchase of a Toyota Harrier. The deal was that the ‘clients’ deposit the money so that the car would be driven from Mombasa to Nairobi and then the complete deal sealed.
What the ‘dealers’ did not know is that the officers had been investigating them for defrauding three people of a total of Sh7.1 million.
The two officers- male and female, after sending the money to a mobile number the two conmen had given claiming it was the office line, agreed to meet them at a show-room along Kiambu Road.
On Friday, the officers from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations arrested Eric Wabwire Illode, 27 and an former Kenya Wildlife Service officer, Simon Muchemi Mbuthia, 30.
“They were arrested at the showroom along Kiambu Road. An identification parade by the victims identified the two as the men who conned them.
“They operate on Facebook pages; City Importers, City Motors ltd and Direct Importers and they usually post pictures of cars they purport to be selling.
“Once the buyer identifies the car, they negotiate the prices and then ask the person to meet them so that they can view the car either in Nairobi or Mombasa. They then ask you to send an amount of money as commitment, but once they have it, they take off,” Kilimani OCPD, Michael Muchiri said.
SWITCH OFF PHONES
They switch off their phones or tell their victims blatantly that they are conmen and that they should be careful next time they are purchasing cars.
The suspects admitted that they registered their mobile numbers using Identity Cards they collected from the streets, and which belong to people they have never even met.
This raises the question of whether Sim Card registration agents double check their clients’ identification documents.
The police are warning the public to only pay money to the dealers themselves, and once they are sure that the product they are purchasing exists.