Where You Can Retrieve Your Stolen Mobile Phone

File image of stolen mobile phones. /FILE

The National Police Service on Wednesday, October 14 has invited Kenyans who have lost phones, laptops and cameras in the recent past to retrieve their property.

Kenyans will be required to visit the Nairobi Regional Police Headquarters (Opposite Integrity House) to trace and retrieve their stolen goods.

“Proof of ownership will be however required before the gadget is released”. noted the police force through their official Twitter account.

A person using his laptop. /KENYANS.CO.KE

This followed several complaints on Inspector General of Police, Hilary Mutyambai’s weekly #EngageTheIG session on Twitter about the rampant loss of phones.

Nairobi Regional Commander of Police Mr. Rashid Yakub in response ordered for an operation that has netted 169 mobile phones and more than 25 laptops and desktops in the last 48 hours.

Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officers earlier on Wednesday, October 14, arrested two foreign nationals over increased burglary cases reported at Karuri area, Kiambu County.

In a statement by the DCI, the two foreigners, upon further probing, led officers to a phone repair shop in Eastleigh estate, Nairobi where the police managed to recover stolen goods.

“Upon interrogation of the two suspects, the detectives proceeded to 1st Avenue in Eastleigh where they raided Diligent Phone Repair Shop and recovered hundreds of assorted mobile phones and laptops suspected to be stolen goods,” read part of the statement.

In the recent past, there has been a surge in theft cases leading to a barrage of arrests and recoveries by the DCI.

Earlier in the year, DCI sleuths recovered 262 mobile phones, computers and accessories from a suspected theft ring based in Kayole and Central Business District.

Robbers employ numerous tactics to snatch mobile phones and personal items which range from the classic snatching them along the streets while one is walking, boarding public vehicles masquerading as passengers to commit their acts to the notorious snatching of phones in traffic.

Once stolen, the electronics are sold off as second hand goods on popular online shopping websites to innocent customers who wind up being arrested and charged with handling of stolen goods.

Almost every person living in Nairobi has had their mobile phone stolen at least once in their lives.

According to a comprehensive report released by the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) in May 2020, Nairobi residents stand a high probability of being victims of crime on any given day.

The council went on to highlight crimes of opportunity such as pickpockets and thieves who often carry out snatch-and-grab attacks in crowded areas and from vehicles idling in traffic, relieving pedestrians or drivers of purses, cell phones or other easily accessible belongings.

“While mobile phones can be tracked using International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) numbers, laptops once stolen are difficult to recover” one police officer told this writer after he was a victim of robbery in January this year.

Directorate of Criminal Investigations headquarters in Nairobi. /CITIZEN DIGITAL
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