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Police bust international fake currency cartel in Nairobi

Police have arrested two men believed to be behind a transnational fake currency ring in Africa, and found about Sh111 billion in counterfeit foreign cash.

Detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations headquarters in Nairobi arrested one man at Kilimani, while his alleged accomplice was apprehended at Diamond Park Estate, off Mombasa Road.

Mr Ousman Ibrahim Bako, a Cameroonian, and Mr Mohammed Sani alias Dr Mustafa from Niger, were arrested on Sunday after a covert operation following reports from some locals and foreigners that the two were involved in a multibillion-shilling racket.

Inspector-General of Police Joseph Boinett on Monday said the latest complaint was from businessmen, who were conned out of more than Sh40 million, purportedly in exchange of foreign currency shipped from Syria.

“We have in the past received a complaint from the Government of the Comoros that some foreigners in Kenya were manufacturing fake notes and circulating them,” Mr Boinnet said.


Police said they found $693.1 million and 369.6 million Euros in safes.

The dollars were in denominations of 100, while the Euros were in 500s.

Also found were money printing machines, cutters, scanners, five safes, two computers, chemicals, masks and foil paper.

“We believe these are the kingpins of printing money,” the police boss said.

Mr Boinett was addressing the media at the DCI headquarters. He also said the detectives believed the men had contacts with fake currency note suppliers from overseas.


“Some of their accomplices are on our radar and we will arrest them soon,” Mr Boinett said.

The notes were taken for forensic examination and found to have at least 70 per cent security features of the genuine currencies.

Police said the two men were taken to court, but were remanded for another two days as investigations were being finalised.

Mr Boinett warned that security agents would not tolerate foreigners abusing Kenya’s hospitality.

“We only welcome foreigners and businessmen in this country and not criminals. We will deal with the criminals in accordance with the law,” he said.