KAMPALA, UGANDA: Police have re-arrested 18 hardcore criminals in the latest city operation targeting thugs involved in waylaying pedestrians and breaking into homes in Kampala and its neighbourhood.
Accompanied by the military, police conducted the operations in Namungoona, Nansana, and Kosovo, resulting in the arrest of 103 suspects.
Luke Owoyesigyire, the Deputy Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson revealed that during the screening process, it was discovered that 18 of the suspects were hardcore criminals with pending cases, including trials for rape, aggravated robbery, and murder.
Among them were individuals like Patrick Bewote, Aaron Kayemba, and Malik Mbabazi, who either have ongoing trials or pending case files at various police stations.
One of the cases involved Malik Mbabazi and his group, who disarmed a private security guard in Kyanja and used his firearm to carry out robberies in several homes in the same area. According to the police, these suspects are often released on bail or given lenient sentences, serving only a year or two before regaining their freedom.
Unfortunately, once released, they resume their criminal activities. One of the murder cases registered against some of the 18 suspects is registered vide CRB 297/2023. Owoyesigyire further revealed that the group was responsible for an attack on the home of former traffic police spokesperson, ASP Faridah Nampiima, during which her home electronics and Shillings 400,000 was stolen.
Investigations have shown that the criminal group has established branches in various locations, such as Nansana, and has ready buyers for their stolen items, primarily electronics. The investigators have identified Cooper Complex in Kampala as a hub where the group’s stolen items, including flat-screen TVs, electronic cookers, and mobile phones, are sold.
These operations in Namungoona, Nansana, and Kosovo followed a joint security crackdown on the Northern Bypass. Earlier, Fred Enanga, the police spokesperson, announced the arrest of 102 suspects involved in victimizing people along the Northern Bypass.
Incidents along the Northern Bypass often involve thugs waylaying people, particularly between 7 pm and 10 pm. Some of the tactics employed by the criminals include throwing stones at moving vehicles to cause drivers to lose control, followed by robbery. Additionally, individuals on motorcycles have been targeted, forcibly removed from their bikes, and subsequently robbed.
In some cases, both riders and passengers have been assaulted with sticks before being robbed of their wallets and mobile phones.
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