Africa-Press – Kenya. Lawrence Kiragu Mugendi, a money laundering suspect, shocked police in Chuka, Tharaka Nithi County, after confessing to stealing ksh20 million from the Al Shabaab while in Somalia.
The suspect was arrested on Tuesday, January 12, 2021, on account of running a fake money syndicate in the country popularly known as “wash wash”.
Meru South Sub-County Police Commander David Ngondi told the media that the suspect had told officers that he had stolen Ksh28 million from the terrorist group while in Somalia.
The police boss stated that Mugendi was wanted by the police after defrauding Kenyans through wash wash.
“We have been able to arrest a notorious criminal who has been defrauding people in a scam known as wash-wash.
“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,” Ngondi stated.
“He says that since 2018 he was in Somalia, and he stole money given to the Al Shabaab as ransom. So he has a lot of money,” he added.
Mugendi was arrested after conning another Kenyan after meeting on the social media.
Ngondi stated that the suspect meets most of his victims through social media after which he requests to be their friend, and after a while seeks to meet them in person. It is then that he shows them Ksh28 million in fake cash and tells them the only thing left is chemicals to authenticate the money.
The police boss narrated that it is then that Mugendi sells them the Al Shabaab story, and victims resort to giving him money to buy chemicals in hope of making millions.
“Upon the news of the suspect’s arrest, two people have reported having been conned Sh870,000,” Ngondi stated.
He urged that members of the public who have been conned by Mugendi to present themselves to the station, and advised Kenyans to be wary of such antics by con men.