Detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) on Friday busted a racketeering syndicate behind a fake jobs scam.
The syndicate obtained hundreds of millions of shillings from unsuspecting job seekers on the pretext that they would be offered employment.
Grace Nyamohanga, alias Nasra—a Senior Sergeant at Lang’ata Women’s Prison—has been identified as the mastermind behind the syndicate, which allegedly swindled jobseekers over Sh200 million in 10 months.
The DCI says Nyamohanga, who has since gone into hiding, operates a mafia organization that recruits helpless job seekers, with the promise of jobs in top government agencies, including Kenya Defense Forces, National Intelligence Service, and the National Police Service. Detectives seized dozens of fake offer letters from her house.
“The suspects have recruited job seekers from across all levels of education and academic disciplines including graduates in Mathematics, Computer Science and Microbiology among others,” DCI said.
One such victim is a woman from Kiambu county, who was defrauded over Sh800,000 with the promise that her three children would be offered jobs at the National Hospital Insurance Fund, Nairobi Metropolitan Services, and the Kenya Ports Authority.
The woman was also offered appointment letters inviting her children to the said institutions to take up positions that had allegedly fallen vacant.
“However, she became jittery on the authenticity of the appointments when the suspect called twice to postpone the reporting dates, citing COVID 19 restrictions. This prompted her to report the matter to detectives,” DCI added.
In January this year, the suspects allegedly recruited over 60 job seekers who were offered forged letters of appointment inviting them to join the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA).
Each of the victims was asked to part with huge amounts of money ranging from Sh300,000 to Sh400,000 depending on one’s level of education.
They were later driven to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, ostensibly to familiarize themselves with their supposed new work environment.
At JKIA, they were addressed by a suspect who posed as the Human Resource Manager and later taken to a high-end facility overlooking the Nairobi National Park, where they were treated to a sumptuous meal.
“Afterwards, they were asked to go home and report on March 18th. That was the last time the victims heard from the phony thugs,” DCI noted.
Investigations revealed that the Nyamohanga works in cahoots with fellow prison warders, who lure desperate job seekers into the trap, obtain money from them, and remit the same to her. One of the warders allegedly collected Sh19 million while another, who is a driver collected over Sh5.7 Million.
Detectives have also widened their scope of investigations to establish the suspect’s link to money laundering after counterfeit US dollars amounting to Sh2.4 million were recovered from her house, at Industrial Area G.K Prison staff quarters.
Two suspects have since been arrested, with the DCI inviting Kenyans who submitted their documents to the fraudsters to present themselves at the DCI headquarters Serious Crimes Unit and file reports.