The detectives had by then lost trace of the wanted men and were focused on the abandoned car. According to officers who were involved in the operation, another man walked into the car and drove off towards Nairobi.
When the detectives stopped him on the way and asked where the occupants who had the car were, the driver said he did not know because he had been asked by another dealer to bring the vehicle back to Nairobi. It is not clear what he told them on being asked where he got the ignition key.
At the police station, officers on duty did not doubt the duo’s theory. They asked them if they had money that they could use to book a lodging. Because they apparently feared they could be caught or detected, they refused to spend the night at various popular hotels in the town, but instead chose a makeshift lodging next to the police station.
The following day, the two had hired another car ready to depart for Nairobi and all they wanted to leave Garissa was police protection, which they got up to Mwingi town.
Officers who had been trailing them said the Garissa team bid them farewell in Mwingi after they were out of the “danger zone”. They then drove back to Nairobi where Najjar apparently hired a room along Mfangano Street.
It was after two days that an informer tipped police saying Najjar was in town. The officers trailed him to the room and arrested him.
Described by Swiss media as a 19-year-old immigrant from Biel, Najjar told police Erdogan jumped into a bus as soon as they arrived in Nairobi and left for Mombasa. Combined security teams in the Coast have since then been trying to trace him.
Kiraithe said he is probably still in the country. “Any person with information on this person should provide the same to the nearest police station. He is believed to be either a citizen of Germany or Turkey and travelling on fake or forged papers,” said Kiraithe.
Najjar is in custody in Nairobi and is set to appear in court for a mention of his case on June 6.
Najjar appeared before Milmani Court’s Senior Resident Magistrate Paul Biwott for the second time in a week to answer charges of being a member of Somalia’s Al Shabaab terror group after he recanted his earlier confessions.