Criminals’ long history of securing their empires
SEE ALSO :Drugs, fake money and wanted tycoonThe complicity of elements in the police force in the narcotics trade at the Coast has been shared in leaked US diplomatic cables. The hold the drug lords have on local authorities was recently laid bare in a US court. A New York court trying two Akasha brothers - Baktash and Ibrahim - was told of how Government officials shielded and sustained the Akasha family drug empire through an elaborate bribery scheme, forcing the US to connive to airlift them away. Baktash, in a conversation with a US agent he believed to be a fellow drug lord who would help him secure a $10 million (Sh1 billion) deal to supply heroin to the US market, boasted how the consignment would be airlifted in a private aircraft from his palatial home in Mombasa. “This house is big, man. They will send their own aircraft. Special aircraft. Hallo! An aircraft will come. It is a special plane that will go all the way to West Africa. From there, they have a gateway to take it to the land of Obama, okay,” Baktash was quoted telling the agent code-named Rashid in March 2014. In the New York trial, prosecutor Geoffrey Berman told of how the Akashas used kidnappings and violence to target Punjani’s associates.
SEE ALSO :Why court freed Ali Punjani’s wife“The lacklustre performance of legal and law enforcement authorities in the cases, the increasingly whispered fear that national politicos are providing protection for the ring, and now the murder of officer Hassan Abdillahi, sharply undermine post’s confidence that Kenyan authorities are serious about combating international narcotics trafficking,” read one cable. Abdillahi was the district criminal officer at the port of Mombasa who had been investigating the presence of 50 containers of hard drugs. His killers have never been identified despite driving away in his car. It is likely there was no honest desire to pursue them. Police units clash But the inconsistencies do not end with the narcotics alone. Earlier in the year, police from different agencies came to a near all-out gun war after one group intercepted smuggled alcohol into the country. The other group was protecting the smugglers in what is thought to be a wider scheme involving their seniors. In April the two police units clashed at a roadblock along the Nairobi-Namanga highway over suspected contraband ethanol. Two detectives from Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) in Parklands were disarmed in the drama before they were rescued by their seniors who sent them reinforcement. They were disarmed at the Kitengela roadblock by a team of police officers as they escorted a lorry laden with suspected illicit ethanol from Tanzania. And in May police had to fight off claims that General Service Unit was guarding the house in which fake gold was stored in Kileleshwa, Nairobi. The officers had been spotted at Kaputei Gardens where a raid on fake Gold had earlier been conducted but police later explained that they were guarding members of Diplomatic corps residing within the court and not the suspects.
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