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Kenyan woman intercepted with 2.5kgs of cocaine at Rwanda Kigali Airport

Lovini Wanjiru Njoroge, said to be a hair dresser, was in transit to Burundi from Brazil through Addis Ababa. The cocaine in five small packages was discovered concealed in ladies bags.

Lovini Wanjiru Njoroge

Lovini Wanjiru Njoroge

A 45-year-old Kenyan woman was on January 30 arrested at Kigali International Airport in possession of 2.5 kilogrammes of cocaine estimated to be worth Rwf85 million.

Lovini Wanjiru Njoroge, said to be a hair dresser, was in transit to Burundi from Brazil through Addis Ababa. The cocaine in five small packages was discovered concealed in ladies bags.

Police Spokesperson, Chief Supt. Celestin Twahirwa said Interpol Kigali received information suspecting Njoroge to be carrying the illegal drug.

“We followed all her movements from Sao Paulo on her way to Burundi through Addis Ababa, and was stopped at Kigali Airport at about 1:30pm. Police officers at the airport checked and discovered five sachets of cocaine masked in ladies bags,” CSP Twahirwa said.

“When you look at previous drug trafficking cases reported at Kigali Airport, it is evident that it’s the same method drug traffickers use to try to confuse law enforcement agencies by concealing cocaine in luggage, but we have also revised methods to ensure that Rwanda doesn’t become either a destination or transit route,” he added.

In November last year, three people were arrested after one of them was intercepted at Kigali international Airport from Brazil, with 7.3 kilogrammes of cocaine, which was found concealed in ladies hand bags.

This was after another Ugandan-born woman traveling on a British passport, was also arrested at Kigali Airport in August en route to Entebbe from Bujumbura, with 1kg of cocaine.

“We will continue to work with other Police forces to break the trafficking chain and arrest all those connected to this ring,” he noted.

While speaking to the press, the suspect, Njoroge tried to deny ownership of the luggage, arguing that it belonged to another Kenyan woman she only identified as Wairim, whom she had met in Brazil.

“I had gone to Brazil for medical checkup, but when I reached there, I met a fellow Kenyan woman called Wairim, who gave me these bags to take them to her sister back in Kenya. I didn’t know that there were sachets of cocaine secretly concealed beneath these bags,” Njoroge claimed.

Article 594 of the Rwanda penal code stipulates a term of imprisonment of three to five years and a fine of Rwf500, 000 to Rwf5 million, to anyone who imports narcotic drugs.

Under clause three of this article, however, if the acts are committed internationally, the penalties are doubled.

Rwanda National Police

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