Over 300 Stolen Phones Recovered After Woman was Sprayed With Chemical and Robbed on Luthuli Avenue

July 2, 2021

Crime busters in Nairobi believe they have made a major breakthrough in cracking down an organised crime syndicate that has been terrorizing Nairobi city dwellers.

Detectives on Thursday said they carried out a sting operation in Nairobi’s South B estate, where they arrested two suspects and recovered an assortment of stolen gadgets and other valuables.

The sleuths traced a mobile phone signal from a gadget that was stolen last weekend to the fifth floor of Itumo Apartment in South B.

The security agents seized more than 300 smartphones, three smart television sets, a car tracker, a laptop, several thumb drives, dozens of emptied wallets, bags, and an assortment of documents — including bank statements — belonging to different people.

Makadara Sub-county Police Commander Timon Odingo confirmed the sting operation and identified the suspects as 27-year-old Samuel Kahuro Wanjiku, popularly known as “Timo” and 37-year-old Margaret Maina.

The duo is believed to be part of a bigger gang that is behind a spate of phone-snatching, car-jackings, and burglary in the capital city.

The police commander said the sting operation followed a complaint filed at Central Police Station by Ms Mary Njihia on June 27.

“The complainant, Ms Njihia, claimed to have been sprayed with an unknown chemical in her eyes on Luthuli Avenue and robbed of money, an Iphone XS and a Camon CX, all worth Sh167,000, by unknown people,” Mr Odingo said.

One of her phones was linked to another phone belonging to her brother, which allowed police to track the stolen gadgets.

“The signal from the phone was coming from Itumo Apartment, fifth floor, door number 3E in South B,” the police boss said.

Police have since reached out to several victims through the contacts saved in the stolen gadgets, who all confirmed they were recently robbed.

“Preliminary investigations show that high-end phones are usually sold in Tanzania, while the cheaper ones find a ready market in the slums.”

“After interrogating the suspects, we have also obtained a written record of what they intended to sell, which town they wanted to hit next, and the types of phones they intended to steal,” Odingo said.

Police have urged victims to visit Industrial Area Police Station to identify their gadgets.

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