Kereni Namara, the Lyantonde District Police Commander, says they picked up Brian Muyanja and Simon Ssentamu with the help of operatives from the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence using the number they left behind asking one of their victims to send them money after taking his number plate.
some of the recovered number plates
Lyantonde Police are holding one of their own in connection to the theft of vehicle number plates. The suspect is Kasimu Mukibi who is attached to Kyazanga Police Station. He is accused of being part of the criminal gang that gives vehicle owners sleepless nights by stealing their plate numbers.
Mukibi was picked up after he was implicated by his accomplices identified as Brian Muyanja and Simon Ssentamu, both residents of Kyazanga town council. Preliminary police investigations show that the suspects together with others still at large are part of the racket that steals vehicle plate numbers in Masaka, Sembabule, Lyantonde, Lwengo and Rakai districts among other areas.
Kereni Namara, the Lyantonde District Police Commander, says they picked up Brian Muyanja and Simon Ssentamu with the help of operatives from the Chietainancy of Military Intelligence using the number they left behind asking one of their victims to send them money after taking his number plate.
She explains that they also recovered several numbers including UBA 010W, UAU 238V, UAK 242M, UAZ 273H, UAP 183E from the suspects. According to Namara, during interrogations, the suspects named Mukibi as their accomplice. Namara decries the rampant theft of vehicle number plates in the district, saying they register at least two cases each day.
She however, says they will track down the suspects and bring them to book. Joseph Matovu, one of the affected residents says he lost his number to thieves last month when they attacked his home. According to Matovu, he has been receiving phone calls from anonymous numbers asking him to pay Shillings 200,000 to recover his number plate back.
Lameck Kigozi, the Southern Region Police Spokesperson, says they have registered 20 cases of vehicle theft since last month, adding that the “groups' arrest is a break through that will help them to address the problem of number plate thefts in the region. He says all those who lost their number plates to go to Lyantonde police station and check if their number plates are among those that have been recovered.
Kigozi says the implicated police officer will be forwarded to the Police Standard Unit (PSU) for disciplinary action. He says the remaining suspects will appear in court once police inquiries are complete.