Officers from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) have arrested a woman accused of conning people by posing as an AirBnB owner in four counties.
Sheila Wakesho Matasa is accused of posing as an operator of apartments in Nairobi, Kiambu, Kisumu and Mombasa counties.
According to DCI, the 24-year-old was arrested in Ruaka town at a bank lobby where she had gone to seek assistance to have her bank account unfrozen after her funds were held over suspicious transactions.
The investigative authority says that Wakesho had created online accounts where she claimed to own AirBnB apartments which she used to con potential customers.
“In a well-choreographed scheme that has milked both local and foreign Coast-goers to the bones, the daring Wakesho opened several social media platforms purporting to own several AirBnBs in the Coastal region of Mombasa, drawing a followership of over 10K unsuspecting fun lovers,” they said in a statement.
DCI says that she would copy information from the internet from authentic AirBnBs compiling it to make her ‘apartments’ more appealing to potential clients including foreigners.
Detectives say that she had created an online payment platform and used multiple cards they suspect had been created using stolen IDs to avoid detection and bank account.
“After netting her targets who could only reach her online, the quiet suspect with loud deals directed them to channel booking fees to M-Pesa Till no. 8981656 or Paybill no. 400200 ACC name: 01100252088001, after which she would vanish leaving them stranded along beaches, bus stations, SGR terminals and airports.”
Police listed Lifestyle Beachfront AirBnB, Mombasa Raha AirBnB and Shah Tours as some of the Facebook accounts she used in her ‘con game’.
Wakesho was arrested after a banker at the said bank alerted police after detecting unusual activity in her account.
“DCI stations around the Nairobi region including DCI Kilimani, Kasarani, Thika, Kiambaa and DCI Kiambu are processing files for her arraignment, as she awaits collection by other counties where her crimes have been reported,” says the Investigative agency.