DCI busts 11 suspects in NTSA vehicle registration scam

11 suspects arrested in high-level vehicle registration fraud scandal at NTSA.[Standard file]

Detectives have arrested 11 suspects linked to a high-level motor vehicle registration fraud at the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA).

The arrests followed a comprehensive system audit of the authority's Transport Integrated Management System (TIMS) that revealed how crooked NTSA officials were operating back office accounts to register motor vehicles fraudulently.

According to a statement by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) on Thursday, October 5, the main suspect identified as Jimmy Kibet Wayans, was arrested at a house in Lavington, Nairobi where he operated a suspicious account that had infiltrated the TIMS system.

Wayans, who is not an employee of NTSA, had major back-office roles and was in control of several other fictitious user accounts in the NTSA system.

He is accused of illegally introducing vehicles into the system and changing their chassis numbers.

"For instance, in the months of March and April alone, 47 vehicles had their chassis changed while 54 were fraudulently added into the system," the DCI said on X.

The audit also uncovered how a deactivated account belonging to a former ICT officer at NTSA was reactivated and was being used for back-office transactions, several months after he had tendered his resignation in July 2022.

Three NTSA employees, Anthony Waithaka, David Migwi and David Kimaren, were also arrested in connection with the fraud.

The elaborate criminal enterprise also involves officials from the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).

So far, one suspect from KRA identified as Boniface Njoroge has been arrested as detectives continue to pursue other suspects involved in this high-level fraud that denies the government the much-needed revenue.

Other suspects are Denis Wafula, Anthony Kariuki, Marvin Renisi, Julius Kiprop, Amos Muthaki and Caleb Odiambo.

"Members of the public are cautioned to be wary of brokers who obtain money from them in the pretext of expediting the processing of motor vehicle logbooks, reflective plates and driving licenses. Instead, they are advised to make use of the TIM portal," said DCI.