Two suspects who have been linked to forgery of logbooks have been detained for seven days.
Timothy Mwangi and Peter Nyaga will spend their Christmas holidays behind bars, as detectives complete investigations into their involvement in the high-level fraud.
This was after a court in Makadara allowed police to hold them until December 31 as the probe goes on.
Their arrest followed an expose by the DCI on how crooked officials at the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) colluded with rogue staff working in microfinance institutions and street brokers to con vehicle owners.
Detectives discovered that one motor vehicle registration number and its logbook would be registered to more than one vehicle and the fraudulent logbook used to secure loans from banks and microfinance institutions.
Before the bonafide owner of the logbook realizes that his logbook has secured a loan, auctioneers from the microfinance involved would rudely be knocking on his door, to sell the vehicle for not servicing the loans.
According to investigations, in one such case, a man living in Garden Estate was driving a car belonging to his wife along the Thika superhighway, when his vehicle was suddenly blocked by another.
Four men jumped out of the vehicle and confronted the man asking him to hand over the keys to the vehicle immediately.
In a scene reminiscent of a carjacking, the badly shaken man surrendered the keys thinking that carjackers had attacked him.
Along the way, he learnt that the men were auctioneers sent by microfinance to impound the vehicle for defaulting on a loan.
The man inquired from his wife whether she had secured a loan using the vehicle’s logbook, but she was equally shocked to learn that her logbook had been used to secure a loan yet she still had her original copy.
Detectives immediately took over investigations into the matter and discovered that the two suspects had used a logbook under fake plates and illegally registered to a Toyota Harrier, to acquire credit of Sh876,000 from Avanzar Financial Solutions.
The investigation established that motor vehicle registration number KCU 244A, was genuinely registered to a Nissan Serena belonging to the genuine owner Beatrice Kerubo, the woman whose husband almost caught a heart attack after auctioneers blocked his way along the Thika Superhighway demanding the vehicle.
The sleuths also discovered that the two suspects had acquired over Sh4 million from MyCredit and Bidii Credit limited, using one logbook.
This is after Bidii Credit Limited advanced Sh2.1 million to Timothy Mwangi on April 20, 2021, and before they collected the joint ownership logbook from NTSA, discovered that the logbook already had been transferred to someone else.
Further investigations into this scam revealed that Mwangi’s accomplice had used the same logbook to secure a facility of Sh 2.2 million from MyCredit Limited on May 27, 2021.
This revelation coupled with last week’s discovery of hundreds of genuine logbooks at a cybercafé in Ngara, further cast the NTSA on the spot for double registration of vehicles and loss of vehicles belonging genuine owners to fraudsters.
Cybercrime experts based at the DCI headquarters have since joined their counterparts seconded to the NTSA to smoke out the crooked officials at NTSA behind this high-level scam, that has left motorists worried that they could be driving vehicles already used as collateral to secure loans for shadowy individuals.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi visited the agency on December 21 and promised to take action soon after the scam of illegal production of fake documents emerged.
The CS, who was accompanied by top ministry officials, read a riot act on them and directed them to put their house in order immediately.
He held an hour-long meeting with the board members before leaving saying he will make an announcement soon. Officials aware of the meeting said an audit of all staff operations there is ongoing and would be out soon.
The scandal comes even after the government made changes at the agency early this year to enhance service delivery.
Those present said the CS was angry at the managers and fell short of telling them they are part of the scam.
Detectives visited the NTSA offices and are focusing on, among others, a new trend at the authority whereby the forced transfer of documents happens, prompting fraud.
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