7 January 2013

Kenya: Man Defrauds Trader of Sh18 Million in 'Gold' Deal

A suspect has been arrested after allegedly defrauding a Malaysian businessman of Sh18 million in the pretext he could sell him gold.

Police said they had obtained evidence showing the man received payment for the 'gold' in three instalments - all in US dollars.

"The money was sent to the bank account of the accused person and that is why he has been arrested," CID Director Ndegwa Muhoro told Capital FM News.

"The businessman made a complaint with the police when he failed to receive the gold," he added.

The suspect was arrested on Sunday and was expected in court later on Monday.

"A file for the case is ready. He will be taken to the Makadara Law courts," he said.

Muhoro said they have many pending cases of foreign businessmen conned of hundreds of millions and sometimes billions on non-existent gold deals.

"This is not the first of such dubious deals. These are matters handled every other time and people never learn, they will still fall into those traps," Muhoro said.

A report released last week by the Mines and Geology department showed that Kenya exported 1,635 kilograms of gold valued at Sh5.6 billion to Dubai and South Africa in 2011.

The documents seen by Capital FM News also showed that the country exported 2,355 kilograms of the mineral valued at Sh6.2 billion in 2010 to Italy, South Africa, Canada and Dubai.

The documents show the gold originated from Turkana, Migori, Moyale, West Pokot, Lodwar, Kapenguria, Siaya, Kakamega and Nandi.

Officials at the mines and geology department said all the companies that were behind the export were genuine and licensed to handle gold in the period under review.

The department released the data on Wednesday to discount earlier press reports that suggested two separate consignments of 400 kilograms and two tonnes of the precious metal may have been exported from Kenya after being brought to the country from DRC Congo.

Media reports had earlier insinuated that more than 2.4 tonnes of the precious mineral passed through the country to Dubai during the period with the aid of senior government officials. The officials say during the period no gold was brought from outside on transit to any foreign country.

But officials said the claims were fictitious.

"Such reports are totally fictitious, there was nothing like that," an official at the geology department said.

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