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Alarm as fake money gang re-invade Thika town.

A file photo of some fake sh. 1000 notes.

Thika Town Today is warning residents about the reemergence of a gang swindling unsuspecting people money through fake money.

In the past few days, several people have lost money to the gang who are especially targeting small businesses asking for change and end up giving their victims some counterfeit cash.

Stephen Kania, one of the latest victim of the gang popularly known as “Wash Wash”, narrated how he was approached by a smartly dressed middle-aged man who identified him by name and after some brief chat, offered to buy Kania some lunch.

“We happened to bump on each other in town and he called me by name. After some brief chat, he offered to buy me lunch worth sh. 500. He handed me a sh. 1,000 note and requested for the balance,” narrated Kania on Friday.

After Kania gave out his Sh. 500, the two parted ways. Later it donned on him that the sh. 1,000 he got was fake.

Another small trader was conned sh. 2,000 after a stranger drove into his shop and requested for change so that he could pay his workers.

“He introduced himself as a real estate developer who was on his way to pay workers who were in his construction site. And since he needed loose cash, he requested me to give him loose change for sh. 5,000. I only had sh. 2,000 in loose notes so I gave him and he handed me two-1000 shillings notes,” said the trader.

He realised of the loss when he went to deposit some money in the bank only for the teller to single out the two notes as fake. Luckily for him, he is a frequent customer thus the bank never handed him over to the police for handling fake cash.

Those we spoke to said that the gang walk around with bundles of sh. 500 and 1,000 notes.

However, there are those said to be holding sh. 200 notes and target small businesses, mama mbogas, hawkers etc who sell items that cost a few shillings, thus the seller will have to give out change for items bought. This is especially very common in very busy shops and in the evenings when the sellers are overwhelmed by customers.

Members of public should be very keen on the notes they are receiving on daily transactions. If an individual innocently tries to spend a fake note and the retailer finds out that it’s a fake, the retailer is within their own rights to confiscate and then pass it over to the police. The individual cannot demand it back nor get any compensation.

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