One more suspect linked to logbook fraud at the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) has been arrested as detectives intensify a clean up at the state agency.
According to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), George Gitu was arrested after a recent probe into the scam placed him at the centre of the multi-million shillings logbooks forgery enterprise.
He is believed to be one of the masterminds working with insiders at NTSA to obtain credit from micro-finance institutions using forged logbooks.
The suspect is alleged to have obtained over Sh4.4 million through forged logbooks of four vehicles belonging to unsuspecting vehicle owners.
DCI said Gitu, working with crooked NTSA officials at the ICT department, was registered in the TIMS system as the bonafide owner of KCD 974Z, Isuzu D-Max, KCR, 280R Toyota Vanguard and KCL 922G, Toyota Landcruiser Prado then fraudulently obtained credit using the vehicles’ forged documents.
“After acquiring Sh1.5 million from Northwave Credit, Sh1.4 million from Momentum Ltd and Sh843,000, from Bidii Credit, the logbooks were reverted to their original owners, in a well-choreographed scheme similar to a Hollywood movie script,” said DCI.
The owners of the vehicles were left at the mercy of ruthless auctioneers who later went for the vehicles that had been used as security, to finance Githu’s and his accomplices’ lifestyles.
One of the vehicles, a Toyota Prado, belongs to a physically challenged woman living in Thika.
The woman, who had received the car as a gift from her daughter, was shocked beyond words after realizing that her vehicle had been used as collateral by Githu to acquire a loan of Sh1.5 million.
Apparently, the fraudsters moving around with high-end cars, pose as legitimate businessmen in the thriving property, land and logistics sectors, while all they do is identify a vehicle on the road or at a parking slot, before contacting their partners in crime at the NTSA and have the vehicle registered in their names.
They then rush to micro-finance institutions and obtain credit.
So far, detectives based at NTSA have managed to arrest five suspects linked to the syndicate since the crackdown began in December last year following a public outcry.
The sleuths working jointly with their counterparts from the Crime Research & Intelligence Bureau are pursuing three more suspects believed to be part of the gang.
Gitu was arraigned at the Makadara Law courts on Tuesday.
He was freed on Ksh100,000 cash bail pending completion of investigations.