Police in Luwero district have arrested a former Special Police Constable (SPC) for allegedly extorting money from members of the public after he posed as a serving officer.
The suspect has been identified as Stuart Kimuli, a resident of Kasana in Luwero Town Council.
Isah Ssemowgerere, the Savannah Regional Police Publicist tells Uganda Radio Network (URN) that ahead of the 2021 general elections, the force recruited hundreds of SPCs in Luwero to beef up security before, during and after the electoral period.
According to Ssemwogerere, these recruits were contracted temporarily for only three (3) months.
After the contractual period, he says they were paid and subsequently laid off.
Since then, Ssemwogerere reveals that police has been receiving complaints that some police officers are extorting money from the public. This prompted the laying of traps to nab those behind this unlawful behavior.
Preliminarily, he says, they learned that some of the laid-off SPCs took advantage because they were now known by the public that they are officers and resorted to cheating the unsuspecting public after losing employment.
Ssemwogerere says they started posing as middlemen at police stations and posts near where they had been deployed during the contractual period. one of the traps laid has seen Kimuli arrested.
In this case, about two weeks ago, there was a road accident involving a Saloon car and a boda boda motorcycle at Kasana along the Kampala-Gulu highway in Luwero Town Council.
Kimuli, the suspect was one of the eyewitnesses of the accident. It’s reported that as the driver of the Saloon car drove away, to save dear life from bodaboda motorcyclists who had started charging at him for knocking their fellow, Kimuli followed him up.
About an hour later after watching where he had hidden, Kimuli approached the driver and verbally presented himself as a police officer, saying he was there to arrest him because as one attached to the Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) control room of Luwero, he had captured him after being involved in a hit-and-run accident.
The victim who has asked URN not to be named recounts that the un-uniformed Kimuli asked him for shs500, 000 to help to save him from being arrested after he kills the case.
He first gave him shs100, 000 and promised to clear the balance later. He says that Kimuli kept pressing him to clear the balance, through continuous phone calls amid threats that he risks being handcuffed.
Becoming more suspicious of Kimuli’s unprofessional approach, the extortion victim decided to visit Luwero Central Police Station (CPS).
This is where more officers picked interest in his complaint after they spread a dragnet to catch Kimuli.
He has now been picked up in Luwero town as he came to receive the balance from his victim. Police suspect that Kimuli has extorted from many more others.
Ssemwogerere asks the public to ask anyone presenting himself as a police officer for a warrant card.
While cautioning other laid-off SPCs, Ssemwogerere says Kimuli’s arrest is to be treated as a deterrent example against impersonators to fight the tarnishing of the force’s image.