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Man impersonating Sonko, fleecing unsuspecting targets arrested in Kisii

Detectives have arrested a man who has been impersonating former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko to defraud unsuspecting parents.

Newton Paul Kengere, 29, is believed to have conned unsuspecting members of the public thousands of shillings in a fake educational loan scheme.

The DCI said in a statement on Thursday that the suspect was arrested in Kisii’s Riokindo Ward within the Kenyenya subcounty.

A handset he was using to send deceptive but fake messages to vulnerable targets was seized together with several SIM cards during the operation.

“DCI Nairobi Area Crime Research & Intelligence Unit team which traced him to his village is processing him before his arraignment on January 19,” DCI Director General Mohamed Amin said.

His arrest came after the former governor lodged a complaint at Capitol Hill Police Station.

Sonko had reported several Facebook accounts that were being operated by the suspect, who purported to be working with the Sonko Rescue Team and coordinating an initiative to help needy parents with school fees challenges.

Kengere is said to have been authoring messages requiring interested persons to register with 1,000 shillings for the advance loans which he said, would not accumulate any interests. To secure a loan, those interested had to also send their ID numbers, full names, location and state the purpose.

“However, after receiving the registration fees, the suspect would swiftly switch from being a persistent caller to the aphoristic ‘patience pays’. This statement was all his targets would get out of their Sh1,000,” Amin said.

According to Section 382 of the Penal Code, “Any person who, with intent to defraud any person, falsely represents himself to be some other person, living or dead, is guilty of a misdemeanour.”

The offence attracts up to three years’ imprisonment.

After the arrest, Sonko took to his social media platforms and thanked the police for their effort in apprehending the suspect.

“I wish to convey my sincere appreciation to the DCI and his entire teams both from Kiambu Road Headquarters and Nairobi Area regional headquarters for the job well job done,” he said.

Adding: “Hawa wezi niliwaambia siku zao haziko mbali.”