A fraud suspect believed to have been operating a high-tech mobile phone scam syndicate, was arrested by DCI detectives on Friday morning. A gunny bag full of SIM cards belonging to Safaricom, Airtel and Telcom mobile service providers was recovered from the suspect in Juja.
His arrest followed a joint operation by detectives and investigators from Safaricom, after he allegedly swindled an MPESA agent an unspecified amount of money. “The fraudster masquerading as an M-PESA customer care attendant, called the agent and lured her into dialling some unspecified codes,” says DCI. “Before the agent realized that she was in a phony call, she had already lost cash from her money-lending account.”
The sleuths say the money was sent to an MPESA account belonging to one of the fraudulently acquired SIM cards. It was then transferred into a Cooperative Bank account.
Millions From Fraud
“Kiprop and his accomplices who escaped our dragnet narrowly, is believed to have swindled unsuspecting members of the public millions of shillings through this pretentious scheme,” adds the DCI.
Investigations reveal that the suspect had hacked into the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) database, and acquired personal details of 61,617 registered voters from a County in western Kenya.
“The data, which was found in his possession, contains names of registered voters, their ID numbers and dates of birth,” adds DCI.
The Line is Mine
Police say the suspects, armed with the personal details of the mobile phone company customers, contact these company and “convince the customer service agents that they are the true owners of the line.”
They then conduct a SIM swap and are then granted full access to the victim’s online accounts. Kiprop, 21, is believed to have previously worked for one of Kenya’s mobile phone networks. His arrest followed a joint operation between Juja DCI officers, Safaricom’s fraud investigations team and Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology security officers.
The sleuths are now appealing for the public’s assistance in nabbing of the suspect’s accomplices.