Nairobbery: Karen Police Boss Purity Kobia Arrested for Auctioning Impounded Vehicle

April 8, 2024

Detectives from the Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) arrested Karen Police Station Commander Purity Kobia last week Friday for allegedly stealing and auctioning a motor vehicle detained at her station.

The Director of Public Prosecutions approved charging the police chief after the car’s owner, Siama Rahma, filed a complaint against her regarding the irregular release of her vehicle from the station.

“The vehicle, a Mazda Demio registration number KCR 526R, had been detained at the station after it was involved in an accident in October 2021 but was released illegally and sold in 2022 through a public auction and without following due process,” a statement from ODPP read in part.

Rahma initially reported the case to the Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA). However, officers there opened and closed the investigation file, asserting that the OCS had committed no wrongdoing.

The decision by IPOA to exonerate the OCS without conducting a thorough investigation prompted Rahma to seek assistance from the Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP).

According to the DPP, Ms. Kobia ordered the sale of the vehicle, valued at Kes.600,000, for only Kes.50,000.

Car Missing From Police Station

The complainant reported that she had made several attempts to retrieve her vehicle but was told to pay an amount she couldn’t afford until July 2022, when she discovered her car was missing from the station.

Ms. Rahma, in her complaint, mentioned that she spotted her car being driven by an officer around Yaya Centre in mid-2023.

“I reported the matter to traffic officers who were on duty in the area, who referred me to the Kilimani police station to avail my ownership documents,” the ODDP said.

She added that upon her visit to the station, calls were made to the OCS, and the car was released to the officer. Meanwhile, she was prohibited from returning to the station.

The complainant informed the Internal Affairs Unit (IAU) that both the OCS and the Inspector were avoiding her calls and obstructing her efforts, leading her to file an official complaint against the station with the IAU in November last year.

The unit conducted a thorough investigation into the matter and submitted the file to the ODPP for further guidance.

30 Days To Compensate Complainant

On February 5, 2024, the ODPP, through the IAU, granted the OCS and her associates 30 days to compensate the complainant. Failure to comply would result in them facing charges including stealing a motor vehicle, abuse of office, and conspiracy to commit a felony.

After the 30 days elapsed, the OCS was scheduled to appear in court on Thursday but failed to do so. Detectives from the IAU pursued the OCS and arrested her, subsequently booking her at Capitol Hill police station under OB number 22/05/04/2024.

Following her arrest, she was released on a Kes.10,000 police cash bail pending arraignment after citing illness.

Ms. Kobia is scheduled to appear in court on April 17, where she will take a plea alongside the auctioneer who sold the vehicle, which is currently held at Capitol Hill police station as evidence.

Ms. Kobia faces charges including conspiracy to commit a felony under section 393 of the Penal Code, stealing a motor vehicle under section 278 of the Penal Code, false swearing under section 114 of the Penal Code, and abuse of office under section 101(1) of the Penal Code.

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