Police in Chuka, Tharaka Nithi County have arrested a suspected ringleader of a notorious fake money syndicate operating in several counties.
Meru South Sub-County Police Commander, David Ngondi, identified the suspect as Lawrence Mugendi. Speaking to the press Tuesday evening, Ngondi said the suspect is also believed to be operating from Thika town in Kiambu County and other towns in the country.
“The arrest of the suspect is a major breakthrough in the fight against money laundering not only in Tharaka Nithi County but also in the neighbouring counties where they circulate the fake money,” said the commander.
Mr Ngondi narrated how the suspect approaches unsuspecting members of the public, mostly on social media, and requests to meet with them so that he can introduce them to a profitable business.
Mugendi then shows up to the meeting with Sh28 million in fake notes and asks his victims to partner in buying a chemical solution that once applied would authenticate the notes.
The suspect reportedly tells his victims that he stole the money from Al-Shabaab in Somali in 2018 before it was completely processed. He adds that the only challenge is getting money to buy a cleaning chemical solution.
Mr Mugendi said when unsuspecting members of the public give money to buy the chemical, the suspect cuts all communication.
“Upon the news of the suspect’s arrest, two people have reported having been conned Sh870,000,” said the officer.
One victim from Meru town called to report that he had been conned out of Sh700,000. Another from Chuka said they lost Sh170,000 to the suspect.
Mr Ngondi called on members of the public who have ever been conned by the suspect or another person through such deals to report.