Wilberforce Murunga, the man who recently hit media headlines after getting a dowry refund from his former in-laws, spent a night at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) last week after falling prey to a fraudster.
Murunga was set to travel to the United States on May 26th but was shocked to learn that a tour agency issued him with a fake flight ticket when he arrived at the airport on Thursday night.
"I did not realize I was a victim of fraud until I got to the airport. You can imagine going to JKIA with all your luggage, going through the process and then getting to the check-in counter and realizing the ticket does not even exist," Murunga told Nation.
Detectives in Trans Nzoia County have since arrested a 34-year-old woman after Murunga reported the matter to Kitale police station. The woman, who masquerades as a travel agent and operates a fictitious tour and travel agency, was arraigned in a Kitale court on Monday where she was charged with obtaining money by false pretense.
She denied the charges and was released on a cash bail of Sh41,000. Detectives have sought more time for investigations as four other victims who fell prey to the scam surfaced.
Murunga says a friend he met in Kitale while attending to the bride price refund case in court introduced him to a tour and travel agency as he intended to travel back to the US where he lives. He later visited the agency’s offices in Kitale town and met the woman owner.
"I paid Sh76,000 for a return ticket on the Qatar airline to America. I was issued with an electronically generated ticket. Little did I know she was a con-woman," he said.
The fake flight ticket indicated that he was to board Qatar Airways QR 1336 on May 26th at 18.10 and arrive at Doha at 23.25. He was to board another Qatar Airways QR 709 flight at 01.30 and arrive at Dallas 09.10 the following day.
Murunga, who received a dowry refund from his former in-laws following a court order last month, hopes to travel to the US despite the setback.
The man moved to court seeking a dowry refund after his marriage to Irine Khasoa was dissolved by a Kitale court last October on grounds that his wife deserted their matrimonial home.
He had paid Sh50,000, three Ayrshire heifers, one cross Ayrshire bullock, one she goat, a pair of gumboots, and a hat as bride price on April 27th, 2019.
On May 14th, he received Sh20,000, three cows, and a goat from his in-laws after forfeiting one cow, Sh30,000, and other items as a token of appreciation. He said his former in-laws were unable to return all the animals and money due to the harsh economy.
"Now we are officially not husband and wife anymore. She is free to move on and likewise since the dowry has been refunded back," he at the time.