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14-year-old boy arrested for forcing other children to steal from their parents

Police arrest a 14-year-old boy linked to a terror gang who has been forcing other children to steal from their parents in Kirinyaga.

A 14-year-old boy has been taken into custody by Kirinyaga police on allegations of belonging to a terror group that has been intimidating other young boys in Mutithi in the Mwea West sub-county.

The boy was arrested following multiple complaints from village parents who reported the matter to Mutithi Police Post before it was later referred to Kiamaciri Police Station.

Some of the parents allegedly claimed that the child had been pressuring younger boys in Grades 4 through 7 to steal money from their parents. 

The boy apparently took his Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exams last year.

Irate residents applauded the police for apprehending the boy and the gang, which had posed a menace to their businesses and well-being. 

“My child had dropped his exams over fear of being attacked by the gang leader…I know his parents well as he was a Class 8 last year,” a parent, Peter Murage, said.

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Another parent, Esther Nyamboke, claimed that the suspect had been forcing her grandson to steal rice from her house and give it to him to sell or he faces a beating.

Francis Muthike, yet another resident, noted that the matter came to the limelight after his grandson wanted to throw himself into a 30-foot well in his compound after he was threatened with death for failing to give the gang Ksh.6,000.

“My grandson who is a Grade 5 pupil had been stealing bags of rice in my store without my knowledge to sell and take the money to the gang. I saved him from throwing himself into a well and when he narrated the whole story to me, I could not believe it,” Muthike said.

Two boys aged 11 and 12 who were victims of bullying on Tuesday evening recorded statements at the Kiamaciri Police Station, and others are expected to also do so in the course of the week.

Mwea West sub-county Deputy Police Commander Sammy Beautah confirmed the incident saying the statements will enable the suspect to be arraigned at Baricho Law Courts on Wednesday.

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