Kigali: Trio arrested over fraud and impersonation

On 31 May 2021 at 06:24

Rwanda National Police (RNP) has arrested three men, who were masquerading as one of their own and fleecing unsuspecting members of the public promising to give them driver’s license without going through the normal due process.

The trio was arrested on Saturday, May 29, in Jabana Sector, Gasabo District. They are identified as Barnabas Siborurema, 36, Theoneste Muhirwa, 43, and Pangrass Twizerimana alias Paccy, 37.

They were showed to the media on Sunday, May 30, at Kigali Metropolitan Police Headquarters in Remera, Gasabo District.

Theoneste Muhirwa, who was guising as “IP (Inspector of Police)” told journalists that he joined forces with Barnabas Siborurema in 2018, when they started defrauding people, targeting mainly those aspiring to be drivers and in the process of acquiring a driver’s license.

“I met Siborurema in 2018 when we started conning people. We were calling ourselves Police officers although the whole idea was brought by Siborurema. We started targeting people, who failed driving tests,” said Muhirwa.

He recalled that in 2018, they defrauded two people of Rwf300, 000.

“It is almost impossible to acquire a driver’s license without going through the usual process of registering, sitting for tests and passing, but we were targeting people, who are easier to manipulate because of their vulnerability especially those who failed the tests and feel frustrated,” said Muhirwa.

Muhirwa’s recruiter, Barnabas Siborurema also recollected that in this month of May, they fleeced another man in Rwamagana District of Rwf500, 000 after making him believe that they are Police officers attached to the traffic department and in position to get him a driver’s license without doing the mandatory tests.

Jean Paul Iraguha is the victim, who was defrauded of Rwf500, 000. He explained that he paid the money to Siborurema at different intervals to get a driver’s license for Category B.

RNP spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera warned the public to avoid shortcuts and opt for the legal procedures of acquiring driver’s license.

“These three people were arrested over impersonation and fraud, the criminal acts they committed while fleecing different people whom they were promising to give driver’s license,” CP Kabera said.

He added: “We always remind the public to avoid such criminal shortcuts where they end up being victims to such fraudsters. It is your right to acquire a driver’s license, but you must go through the well laid process instead of ending up being cheated of such big sum of money. If you fail the first attempt, try again and again; do not give up because paying someone to give you a license is also criminal.”

Article 174 of the law determining offences and penalties in general states that any person who, by deception, obtains another person’s property, whole or part of his/her finance by use of false names or qualifications, or who offers positive promises or who threatens of future misfortunes, commits an offence.

Upon conviction, he/she is liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than two years and not more than three years, and a fine of between Rwf3 million and Rwf5 million.

In article 279, any person, who without tittle usurps public, civil or military functions or poses the acts of one of these functions or falsely attributes to himself/herself the quality of a public official or publicly wears a costume, a uniform, badge or an emblem with an intention to mislead the public, commits an offence.

Upon conviction, the offender is liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than two years and not more than three years, with a fine of between Rwf300, 000 and Rwf500, 000.