The ringleaders of human traffickers have been detained for five days on the strength of a court order for completion of investigations.
A magistrate at the Milimani Law courts directed that Ethiopians Samuel Mesfin and Merone Abera,and, their Kenyan cohorts Caroline Wanjiru Kamau and George Kariithi Mberia be detained after they were linked to a syndicate of transnational human smuggling involving young Ethiopian to “various destinations for prostitution.”
‘The arrest of the respondents was a result of investigations into 4 other Ethiopians who had in their possession blank letter heads of Ethiopian Athletic Federation, passports and air tickets…” Timothy Mbugua, Chief Immigration officer told the Nairobi court.
Human trafficking syndicate
Investigations, so far, show that the suspects are part of a transnational human trafficking syndicate involving Nigerians and Rwandese operating in various international destinations, the court heard.
“The syndicate is involved in counterfeiting Canadian and Mozambican Visas to facilitate the illicit movement of victims,” the officer said.
Smuggling of human beings attracts a jail term of three years and a fine of Ksh500,000.
Forgery of Visas is punishable by fines not exceeding Ksh5 million or jail terms not exceeding five years.
Immigration believe the suspects have other “on-line personas who are being vigorously pursued by security agencies.”
The young women, court heard are trafficked through JKIA to various international destinations.
Arrests were made at a house in Nyayo estate, Nairobi and Royal Air Maroc offices at Loita Street on January 25 2018.