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Kenyans are eagerly waiting to know who will bag the Ksh 116M bounty offered by the US government following the arrest of Badru Abdul Aziz Saleh, a Kenyan national wanted for narcotics and wildlife trafficking.
The fugitive was arrested Tuesday following a multiagency effort by US and Kenyan sleuths, four days after the US Department of State announced a record Ksh233M reward for Saleh and his accomplice Abdi Hussein Ahmed, who is still at large.
According to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), the informant tipped off the detectives regarding the fugitive’s whereabouts, days after the joint briefing at DCI headquarters.
Authorities have assured the money will be paid to the ‘lucky’ person responsible for the arrest but will remain under wraps for security reasons.
Badru is currently in police custody as efforts to trace his accomplice remain in top gear.
“His arrest is as a result of our outstanding relationship with members of the public who provided information regarding the fugitive’s whereabouts, days after the joint briefing at DCI headquarters. We continue to thank the public for partnering with us in the fight against crime and call upon anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of the remaining suspect Abdi Hussein Ahmed to report via our secure anonymous toll-free line 0800 722 203 or the U.S embassy in Nairobi on +18443978477” the DCI said on its official Twitter handle.
According to a U.S. federal indictment in 2018 and 2019, Saleh and others who were identified during a wildlife trafficking investigation conspired to distribute at least 10 kilograms of heroin to a buyer located in New York.
After several meetings, Saleh and his co-conspirators delivered the first kilogram of heroin to a buyer in Nairobi, Kenya. According to the indictment, in June 2019, Saleh fled from law enforcement, along with his co-conspirators, before completing the remaining heroin transaction.
He was subsequently arrested by DCI detectives for drug trafficking in Kenya on July 11, 2019, and arraigned at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport Law Courts, a day after.
During Saleh’s judicial process in the country, he was released on Ksh200,000 bail.
Saleh disappeared and became a fugitive, with a warrant for his arrest being issued.
In June 2021, following a joint investigation of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), a federal grand jury in the Southern District of New York returned an indictment charging Saleh and other conspirators with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of heroin, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment.