Two suspects are in police custody for allegedly defrauding innocent Lugari residents, thousands of shillings purporting to allocate them land in the government forest in the area.
According to Lugari Deputy County commissioner William Lenaremo the two fraudsters were moving around in Majengo village using a motorbike registering people to be allocated forest land before they were nabbed by Mwamba sub location assistant Chief Edwin Nashirobe with help of three village elders.
Lenaremo said that a member of the public inquired from the area assistant Chief if there were any arrangements to allocate locals government forest land after registration but it turned out to be a fake deal which prompted their immediate arrest.
According to the DCC, the two claimed to be a registered group, but they were soliciting funds for registration certificate. They were found to be in possession of a receipt book, a stamp, stamp pad and motorbike.
From their records seen, they had so far collected Sh 86,400 from 28 members of the public. Each member had contributed between Sh 2,500- Sh 6,500. The payment receipt had the group name ‘Turbo Mautuma Settlement Scheme Squatters’.
The two were taken to Majengo Police Post and later handed over to the Department of Criminal Investigation (DCI) for further investigations.
The motorbike rider fled and was still at large but the motorbike registration number KMER 428 K, was handed over to police.
Lenaremo has urged members of the public not to be quick to give out money for any government service without proper scrutiny.
He said police together with well-wishing and vigilant local residents will smoke out a cartel of land fraudsters who are swindling money from innocent members of the public in the name of being allocated to a non-existent government land program.
“From my capacity, I am assuring members of the public that I will not tolerate unscrupulous individuals to continue defrauding innocent villagers, in the name of fake programs,” Lenaremo said.
He said people should work closely with Chiefs and their Assistants so that they get to understand existing government programs.