KAMPALA. Six police officers, including former Kampala South Regional Police Commander Siraje Bakaleke, will soon be arraigned before court to face charges of kidnap and extortion of Shs1.4b from two Korean nationals last month.
Last month, three operatives George Kayongo, Kenneth Zirintuusa and Patrick Ochen as well as Isaac Munezero, the crime intelligence officer at Katwe Police Station, were arrested for allegedly extorting the money from Seunghoon and Jang Shingu. Mr Bakaleke, who is alleged to have masterminded the scheme, recorded a statement in relation to the matter and was released on police bond.
Police spokesperson Emilian Kayima said the case files are nearly ready and the suspects face five offences; unlawful deportation, obtaining money by false pretence, robbery, kidnap and theft.
“These were serious crimes that we are investigating to conclusion. Our investigations are progressing very and we only miss a statement from one suspect who is yet to appear,” Mr Kayima said on Monday.
Sources had earlier intimated to this website that the implicated police officers intercepted intelligence information that the two South Korean nationals were in the country to buy gold worth more than $1.5 million and were, through their lawyer, set to meet gold dealers at Acacia Mall.
Sources said the police officers swung into action and deployed at Acacia Mall. It is said when the Koreans arrived at the meeting venue, they were instead surrounded by the armed officers and arrested.
The police officers reportedly ordered the two Koreans to hand over the money before they were detained at Katwe Police Station, where they spent the next two days.
The two Koreans, in a statement at police, claim that the police officers then attempted to deport them back to their home country and bought two air tickets. However, the sources add that in the process of transporting the duo, they missed the flight.
Mr Kayima said the officers flouted the deportation procedures.
“There many criminal offences involved in this matter but what I can say we have recorded statements from all officers who were involved and their files will soon be sent to DPP [Directorate of Public Prosecution] for advice,” he said.