Suspect in Nairobi West ATM heist felled in police gunfire

Thursday, March 26th, 2020 00:00 |
A police officer walks by a G4S car that was abandoned at Upperhill during a past incident. Inset, Wycliffe Vincent Oduor. PD/FILE

A suspect behind the September Sh74 million Standard Chartered Bank heist was on Tuesday night shot dead by police during a botched robbery in Kayole, Nairobi.

The incident and some other latest incidents are just the tip of the iceberg with reports indicating that recidivism—the tendency of criminals to re offend—is one of the challenges faced by the law enforcers.

Wycliffe Vincent Oduor is said to have been robbing members of the public at the Kayole junction while accompanied by two other men.

A team of detectives from Kayole Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) who responded to a distress call shot Oduor, popularly known as ‘Vinni’, dead as the others escaped on a motorcycle.

Nairobi Region Police commander Philip Ndolo said the gang had been terrorising members of the public in Kayole, Obama and Ruai.

“The gang defied orders to surrender, engaging the officers in a fire exchange which left the said suspect dead. We recovered a pistol and a knife,” he said.

He added: “We already have adequate information about the two other suspects who escaped. We are tracking them down.”

Oduor was among the suspects charged with the Standard Chartered heist and was released on a cash bail of Sh500,000 by Chief Magistrate Francis Andayi.

They were accused of robbery with violence after they allegedly robbed G4S staff of the Sh74 million and 38 cassettes, 13 purge bins and 13 canvas bags, totalling Sh75.9 million.

They were also charged with malicious damage to property after destroying property belonging to G4S valued at Sh1,267,000 in Thogoto Forest, Kiambu.

Reports from the police headquarters however indicate that criminals and some rogue officers previously accused criminal activities do relapse into criminal activities.

“The latest arrests and prosecutions have not been entirely deterrent. Some of these suspects get involved in other criminal activities even when the previous cases are still pending in court,” said a senior officer.

The Police Service is said to lack capacity to monitor rogue officers who were dismissed or interdicted from the service due to criminal activities.

A number of officers who have either been dismissed or interdicted, or with cases pending before courts have been arrested after they were found involved in crime.

In December last year, two police officers who were seized following a botched robbery, where they arrested a man and forced him to go and withdraw cash from the KCB NHIF branch, were found to be having another case of robbery and kidnapping before Kibera Law Courts.

Constable Job Moracha Anyona, Constable Oliva Jumba, an Administration Police officer, a Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) soldier and two other suspects had earlier been arrested in a botched-up ransom demand after kidnapping a boy in Langata.

The suspects held a boy hostage and demanded Sh5 million from the parents. They were later charged in a Kibera court with robbery and kidnapping and as a result Constable Anyona and the two other officers were interdicted.

The extent of involvement of police in criminal and corrupt activities can however not be established as most of these cases go unreported as most of the victims fear for their lives or also criminals who would not want to expose themselves.

More on National