Police Officers have arrested six suspects on suspicion of being part of livestock theft syndicate in Machakos County.
Athi River Sub County police commander Anderson Njagi said five of the suspects had been locked up at Athi River police station while another was at Kiserian police station.
The police boss said those detained at Athi River police station included Pauline Muthoni, David Macharia, Peter Njenga, Ngenoi Hilalu and Samwel Mwangi.
“In the past one and a half years, we have had a series of stock theft within Machakos County and its environs that include Kajiado, Nairobi, and Kiambu counties. From the onset, we were convinced that this was an organized crime that was being carried out by a cartel,” Njagi said.
Njagi addressed the press on Tuesday at his office accompanied by Athi River Sub-county Criminal Investigations Officer John Kanda.
He said they had put the cartels on their radar.
The police boss said they made the arrests after intensive investigations with the help of the Athi River DCI detectives alongside their counterparts from the Forensic Investigations Department at the headquarters.
“And this culminated into the night of December 16, 2021, when we lost 15 herds of cattle stolen from Portland village within Athi River. After this incident, we embarked on intensive investigations which involved both physical and forensic analysis,” Njagi said.
“Through that, we were able to place the six suspects at the scene of the incident. We have been able to get a local agent who is normally the conduit. He goes around surveying cattle bomas so that they steal the cattle and other livestock,” he added.
The Sub County police commander said Hilau who hails from Oloitoktok but lives in Kitengela town in Kajiado County is the cartels’ spy and conduit.
Macharia is the driver of a Mitsubishi lorry KBG 876 K used to transport the 15 heads of cattle from Athi River to Naivasha according to Njagi. The vehicle has been impounded at Athi River police station to be used as one of the exhibits in court.
He said Njega is the cartels’ financier and finances all the illegal businesses the suspects are involved in. He was arrested in Ruiru.
“Njenga, the financier of all the illegal businesses owns a series of meat outlets around Nairobi’s Eastern bypass and within Ruiru town in Kiambu County. We have additionally established that a number of these suspects including Njenga have several pending cases in courts within Kajiado, Matungulu and Athi River,” Njagi said.
A sleuth privy to the investigations disclosed that Muthoni is Njenga’s girlfriend and her car was being used for surveillance by the syndicate during their criminal activities. Maina owns the impounded lorry used to ferry stolen livestock.
Njagi said they will consolidate those cases into one.
Athi River based DCI sleuths on Tuesday obtained an order from Mavoko Law Courts to detain the suspects for 14 days so as to complete their investigations.
Njagi appealed to the public to volunteer information that will help police eliminate such criminals and ensure a safe society.
“We are going to make sure that these suspects end up in jail. We can’t encourage this kind of crime since it will make the locals destitute,” he said.
“I want to send a stern warning to such criminal groups that we are going to deal with them ruthlessly. We will make sure they end in jail so that our people can go about their businesses in peace,” Njagi said.
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