City Bloggers face up to 10 years in prison if found guilty: Police say

Two city bloggers Edgar Obare and Richard Ngethe have been arrested over Sh 10M fraud and extortion.

They were arrested by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) for allegedly seeking to defraud and extort 100,000 U.S dollars from a wealthy Somali businessman in the oil and gas industry in Africa, the police stated that there are three other criminal bloggers on their radar.

“We cannot disclose who other bloggers are and how we will be able to pounce on them. That is a matter being investigated by the DCI,“said Mr. Kikwali, SSP.

The Somali businessman stated that the fraudsters have been on his case stating that they have damning evidence on his underhand dealings and bribery allegations since he won a major oil tender.

His lawyer stated that “We are happy that these so-called bloggers have been arrested and therefore bringing closer to this very torturous matter. My client has been tormented for far too long.”

Their illegal actions were deemed by the Criminal Investigations Department, to be in violation of Section 23 of the Computer Misuse and Cybercrime Act, 2018, which states that;

“A person who knowingly publishes information that is false in print, broadcast, data or over a computer system, that is calculated or results in panic, chaos, or violence among citizens of the Republic, or which is likely to discredit the reputation of a person commits an offense and shall on conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding five million shillings or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years, or to both.”

Obare and Nthenge could face up to 10 years in prison.

This current arrest is not Obare’s first brush with Kenyan authorities. In July 2020, he was arrested and questioned for his titillating exposés of scandals involving well-known Kenyan personalities shared via his Instagram Stories.

This arrest come in the wake of another complaint on the same to the Police, this time by a reputable and respected top Private Jet Company – Glo JET International Corporation, a United States of American Charter Company with a Regional Office in Nairobi.

The Bloggers have been on the offensive on Glo-JET stating that the company is engaged in “Gold SCAM”. They have written articles and spread rumors on the same, as they attack the character of the top leadership of the company.

We visited Glo-JET offices at the Plaza to verify some of these allegations. This is what the head of Media Relations said, “Glo-JET is not your ordinary company.

First, being an international company, we respect the law of the land here in Kenya and in all the forty-six (46) global worldwide offices. We have a reputation to protect. We are above board. We don’t trade in Gold. We don’t transact in Gold.

We are just a luxurious charter company. What the bloggers are writing is utterly false. They have been demanding we pay huge amounts of funds while threatening to write bad things about our company. Of course, they did write since the company did not part with the money. So, our lawyers and the police are dealing with the issue.” Said Yasmin Baraka – Head of PR at Glo-JET.

“Hassan, you work for a fantastic media house. And you can read. These fake bloggers even claim somebody a “Mr., Obure” is a director of the company which is false. You have the Registrar of Company database to confirm that Glo—JET is owned by Glo-JET USA and one Kenyan. This is public information.

They keep tying a Mr. Obure to our company. Who is this Obure? He doesn’t work here. We know nothing about all these things being written. Honestly, it’s annoying to keep lying. Do they want us to close the Kenyan office and move the African Headquarters to South Africa? Where will all these 500 people go? Come on, Kenyan can do better and the police need to crack the whip., ” said a visibly angry Yasmin.

She continued. “A case in point is some murder that occurred around our building, they keep dragging the name of the company which has nothing to do with all these things they are saying. Doing business here in Africa is so hard because of such theatrical drama. You can’t just write filth of that nature in USA and Europe. They will pick you up.”

A closer review of the database from the registrar of companies indicates that indeed Glo-JET is owned by USA and one Kenyan. Equally, the company is so strict on compliance issues before they transact business. They have even issued warnings to potential Gold BUYERs who plan to use their Charter to transport the commodity Ref: https://www.glo-jet.com/gold-scam-fraud-alert . See below:

SCAM/FRAUD ALERT
a. ) Customers seeking to use GLO-JET INTERNATIONAL CORP charters for gold shipments should independently (first) conduct thorough due diligence and background checks on their suppliers to be aware of the credibility/authenticity of the persons behind such supplies before placing requests for a quote with Glo-JET.


b. ) This REALISTIC CAUTIONARY STATEMENT is due to the fact that GOLD FRAUD AND SCAM is annoyingly on the rise hence the need to cushion our well-meaning customers from being victims.


c. ) Glo-JET International Corp IS NOT in the business of gold mining and/or trading, clearing/handling. Neither is the company interested in venturing into such initiatives. As such, Customers are advised that Glo-JET SHALL NOT TAKE RESPONSIBILITY on fully paid charters that have not been utilized – and therefore canceled by the Department of Legal Affairs/Office of the Company Secretary.


d. ) Please take note that our contractual obligation lies in chartering goods that have been cleared by the respective Government Authorities from where we take off. Club Members [https://www.glo-jet.com/club-membership] should seek guidance with the LOCAL EMBASSIES AND CONSULATES on legitimate/legal steps approved by the said authorities for such transactions.


e. ) Goods/Cargo must officially be cleared through government-approved channels before involving GLO-JET for charter and related services.


f. ) If a Club Member (https://www.glo-jet.com/club-membership) detects glaring acts of FRAUD, we urge that they send an e-mail to [email protected] so that immediate action can be taken.

The Company also has an RC Form 401 (a) that must be filled by all persons planning to use the services of the company. Ref: https://www.glo-jet.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/RC-FORM-401-a.pdf .

We can confirm that Glo-JET has been following the right procedures while conducting its business. They are not involved in SCAM or any related FRAUD as depicted by the scrupulous lethal bloggers who use their fake sites to attack reputable companies.

Some other companies who have faced the wrath of these bloggers are Tabitha Karanja’s company Keroche, Jimi Wanjigis Kwacha Group of Companies and Peter Munga’s Equity.

A top official from The Kenya National Chambers of Commerce and Industry who was contacted stated that “It takes time and money to build a company such as Safaricom, EABL, Equity, Glo-JET, Meriton, Brookside Mild, etc.

It is painful that bloggers and scandalous people have resorted to extortion. Very sad. These are companies we respect and they are our members. We shall protect them at all cost.” Said the top official who sought anonymity.

Investigations done by this reporter revealed that over ten (10) websites/blogs have been created by these persons under arrest to criminally extort money from wealthy businessmen in Kenya and East Africa as a whole. Some of these websites are

 www.kenyanmarketintelligence.com,

www.kahawatungu.com,

 www.allafrica.com,

 www.kenyanreview.com

www.operanews.com

www.biznakenya.com

www.kenyandigest.com

www.theafricancriminologyjournal.

worldpress.com,

 www.scoopernews.com,

 www.lawandpowerkenya.com ,

 www.bnn.kewww.edgarobare.github.io 

www.kenyainsights.com.

All these are run by pseudo names but still belong to Edgar Obare, Robert Alai, Cyprian Nyakundi and Richard Nthenge – who we can confirm are scammers and fraudsters running fake blogging establishments. It is an extortion network.

The Police revealed to our reporter that these bloggers target powerful women over alleged sex scandals and wealthy businessmen.

“Am sure many more arrests will happen. Am also sure that many other complaints will be coming. Anybody who has been attacked by these people should report the matter to DCI Headquarters.” Said the Head of the Police who has been following up with the matter.

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