A scrap metal dealer responsible for the vandalism of railway gauge blocks, occasioning the delay of Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) services on Monday, November 22, has been arrested.
According to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), Michael Mbevi was arrested on Saturday morning at his scrap metal store in Kinyambu, Mtito-Andei, as he loaded the gauge blocks into a lorry destined for the lucrative scrap metal market.
Also arrested at the store in the 11am raid, was the Lorry’s driver Nicodemus Kyove who attempted to escape arrest.
A scrap metal dealer responsible for vandalism of railway gauge blocks, occasioning the delay of SGR services on Monday November 22, has been arrested. Michael Mbevi, was arrested today morning at his scrap metal store in Kinyambu, Mtito-Andei, as he loaded the gauge blocks pic.twitter.com/gkXdsD5AFN
— DCI KENYA (@DCI_Kenya) November 27, 2021
The two, DCI said, were nailed following a tip-off from a member of the public.
“Disappearance of the critical blocks led to the stoppage of operations along the busy railway line for two hours, as railway engineers and security officers inspected the extent of the damage caused to the critical national transport infrastructure,” DCI said in a statement.
“The greed by scrap metal dealers to make quick profits through sale of the gauge blocks which ensure that the width of the railway line is maintained, could have led to devastating consequences including the derailment of a train.”
Consequently, DCI boss George Kinoti said the suspects will face economic sabotage and terrorism-related charges.
“The offence committed by the suspects who will face Economic Sabotage and Terrorism related charges is very serious and should serve as a warning to any other person/s harbouring the idea of vandalizing railway property,” the DCI added.
He added: “We celebrate the member of the public who provided information leading to the arrest of the suspects & call upon other Kenyans to assist security agencies in the protection of life & property through providing information. #FichuakwaDCI 0800 722 203.”