On Monday Thomas Mutiso, a businessman in Machakos town approached a car selling company in Nairobi, to dispose of his old car.
The company which sells used cars on-line posted the pictures of Mutiso’s vehicle on social media.
The car’s condition on photos posted on the social media ostensibly attracted a “woman” calling herself Shirley Jackson.
On the same day, the woman who claimed her name is Jackson called Mutiso on the phone and informed him she was interested in the car.
“She said she is from Narok town and would be travelling to Nairobi today, Tuesday, October 7. She also requested that I send her pictures of my car’s interior and the engine which I did,” Mutiso said.
In the evening of Monday, she called Mutiso again on the phone and both agreed to view the car today (October 7).
“I however had started developing doubts about her identity due to her accent. This morning she called to tell me to say she was on the way,” said Mutiso.
At 9.58 am, Mutiso said the woman sent him a text claiming she had caused an accident at Suswa stretch on her way to Mai-Mahiu.
She also sent Mutiso some pictures of the alleged accident scene.
“I checked the pictures and found a truck KBR 423 G and pictures of two dead cows. But what struck me was the absence of any serious damage on the vehicle and the difference in the vegetation around the cows and the truck” said Mutiso.
However, Mutiso called the woman, who was at the time hysterically shouting and saying: “Oh my God! Oh my God!”
She told him the Maasai owner of the cows killed had slapped her, taken the car keys and was threatening to beat her up.
Mutiso said she asked to talk to the alleged owner of the cows and when he was given the phone, he said he was going to beat her up and burn the vehicle unless he was given Sh 35,000.
“I talked to him and tried to cool him down. I managed to bring the figure to Sh 25,000. While we were talking, I noted that there was not a lot of background crowd noise contrary to what you would expect from the pictures,” said Mutiso.
He then talked to the woman but she told him she only had Sh 17,000 and requested that I send her the balance.
The woman told Mutiso that she had attempted to reach out to her church minister to help her with more money but was not picking her call.
“I told her I did not have the money and switched off because I had heard this story before,” said Mutiso.
Narok county police commander John Kizito, whom we shared the story and pictures of the alleged damaged car and dead cows, said: “This is a con-woman” and advised those who have been conned by the said woman to report the matter to the nearest police station.
“Tell them to share all the phone numbers which the conmen use to swindle them. How can people just send money to people they have not seen?” asked Kizito.
Kizito said police in Narok are high on alert over such cases, but suspects that those conning people could even be in his area of jurisdiction.
“They could even be in Nairobi or Machakos from where they send those photos to convince their victims,” said the Narok police boss.