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Kenya

Kidnapped female banker in Sh5m theft freed

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 17 – Two people have been arrested over alleged involvement in the kidnapping of a female banker who went missing over the weekend, only to be released on Monday.

Police said the suspects were arrested soon after the woman – a teller at a local commercial bank – was released.

She had been abducted within Ongata Rongai and held captive by gunmen believed to have coerced and even beaten her to reveal bank codes which helped them siphon more than Sh5 million from the bank.

“The two men are now in custody assisting officers with an investigation. The woman was released after being beaten up. We are also talking to her to get more information on activities of the gunmen,” a police officer involved in the investigation told Capital News adding, “money transacted in the period is not less than Sh5 million.”

Police were finalising investigations to enable them charge the suspects in court on Wednesday.

A senior police officer at the Flying Squad Unit told Capital News that they are investigating further to establish if the case was isolated or if it is a syndicate introduced by sophisticated criminals who are finding it difficult striking banks with weapons.

The suspects were being held at the Ongata Rongai police station where they were questioned by officers from the Flying Squad unit.

Divisional police chief for Rongai Simon Kiragu confirmed the investigation was underway.

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Police said the woman was kidnapped on Friday as she walked home and bundled into a blue saloon car.

Police are said to have been notified soon after she was abducted but failed to reach her until Monday when she was released, after being battered.

This latest incident has sparked fears amongst detectives in the elite units who believe the trend of kidnappings experienced in the country two years ago are slowly making a comeback.

It comes barely a week after bodies of two men kidnapped from Athi River on December 30, 2011 were recovered in Njiru.

The bullet-riddled bodies were that of a clinical officer and a businessman who were seized from a chemist in Athi River in the outskirts of the capital.

Families of the two had been looking for them for almost two weeks, until Wednesday when they found them dumped at the city mortuary.

No suspect has been arrested over the Athi River kidnappings.

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