A man identified as Shadrack Ndagijimana, 36, has been arrested in the City of Kigali after he was found in possession of counterfeit money amounting to Rwf400, 000 and US435 dollars.
Ndagijimana was arrested in Nyabugogo bus terminal at about 4am on Saturday as he attempted to board a vehicle, apparently heading upcountry.
Police spokesperson for the City of Kigali, Supt. Emmanuel Hitayezu said that suspect caused commotion in the bus terminal as he was apparently “unreasonably” arguing with passengers, which attracted the attention of police officers attached to the police post inside the park.
“When police officers went to assess and calm the situation, they realized that Ndagijimana’s behavior was unusual as he tried to fall back like someone who wants to escape from something,” said Supt. Hitayezu.
“They immediately stopped and searched him and they recovered 80 fake notes in Rwf5, 000 denominations and US$435, and he was immediately taken into custody,” he added.
He noted that investigations are still underway to establish the origin of the counterfeit money, all those that could be involved and to find out if the suspect had already circulated some of the fake currencies, still has more notes hidden or in the hands of accomplices.
Counterfeit or forged money, he noted, is not a threat in Rwanda but added that each note has its impact to the victim and ultimately to the national economy.
“Counterfeiting and circulating money is a high impact crime that Rwanda National Police gives special attention. We call upon everyone especially owners of small businesses and telecom banking services – the most targeted – to be vigilant, thoroughly verify the money they receive and always be quick to report to the nearest police or call emergency lines like 112, for immediate response,” he said.
Articles 601 to 604 of the Rwandan penal code criminalize and punish those who falsify or alter coins and bills which are legal tender, punish those, who knowingly circulates fake monies and those who acquires fake currencies unknowingly, but circulates them after discovering they are counterfeit, with an imprisonment of up to five years.