Motorcyclist intercepted trafficking 10,000 pellets of cannabis

On 25 November 2020 at 07:56

Police in Jomba Sector of Nyabihu District On Monday 23rd November, intercepted a taxi-moto operator identified as Raphael Nsengiyaremye, 33, with about 10,000 pellets of cannabis.

Nsengiyaremye, who was trafficking the narcotics on a motorcycle TVS, plate number RE 221Z, had concealed the ‘very severe drugs’ in a sack of charcoal so as to beat security.

Apparently, Nsengiyaremye had been hired by a major drug dealer to pick the illegal luggage from Mukamira in Nyabihu District and deliver it to him in Ngororero District.
The charcoal trick, however, hit a dead end upon information provided by a suspicious local resident.

“Police has since established that Nsengiyaremye left Kamonyi District at about 4am on Monday, to pick the narcotics in Mukamira, Nyabihu District. He was hired by a suspected major drug dealer identified as Jean de Dieu Uwamungu and they were supposed to link up in Ngororero District,” Chief Inspector of Police (CIP) Bonaventure Twizere Karekezi, the Police spokesperson of the Western region said.

In Mukamira, Nsengiyaremye met a cyclist identified as Jean Claude Gapanda, who brought the sack of charcoal in which the narcotics were concealed. However, on the way to Ngororero with the illegal luggage, he encountered a Police checkpoint.

“Nsengiyaremye hired a cyclist after seeing Police officers, to transport the sack across the checkpoint along Mukamira-Kabaya road, and they linked up across the checkpoint.

However, there was a resident, who witnessed all that transpired between Nsengiyaremye and the cyclist. This prompted the suspicious resident to walk straight to Police officers at the checkpoint and report the incident,” CIP Karekezi explained.

Police officers in Mukamira, he added, immediately contacted their counterparts in Jomba Sector.

“A roadblock was mounted in Rugera Village of Nyamitanzi Cell in Jomba where Nsengiyaremye was intercepted at about 5:30am. The officers searched the sack he was transporting only to find two bundles containing about 10,000 rolls of cannabis, covered with charcoal. Nsengiyaremye was immediately taken into custody and the motorcycle impounded at Jomba Police station, where he was handed over to Rwanda Investigation Bureau,” said the spokesperson.

In the phone communication between Uwamungu and Nsengiyaremye, the former had sent the latter Rwf 50,000 on Mobile Money.

In turn, Nsengiyaremye also wired Rwf 30,000 from his phone to another phone registered in the names of Jean Claude Gapanda, who allegedly brought to him the charcoal sack in which the narcotics were concealed.

CIP Karekezi thanked the resident, who raised the suspicion and facilitated the arrest of the motorcyclist.

“Whenever you suspect any foul play, call the Police or any other relevant institution to authenticate your suspicions; that’s what community policing and neighborhood watch is all about,” the spokesperson said.

Law enforcement agencies, he said, are working together to bring to justice all those connected to this criminal act.

The Ministerial Order No. 001/MoH/2019 of 04/03/2019 establishing the list of narcotic drugs and their categorisation, classifies cannabis as a "very severe drug."
The law determining offences and penalties in general in Rwanda, especially in its article 263, provides an imprisonment of between 20 years and life, for anyone convicted for very severe narcotic drugs and a fine of up to Rwf30 million.