Big Story: CID Impounds Vehicle of Suspects Who Conned U.S. National in Gold Scam

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Detectives at Criminal Investigations Directorate have impounded a brand new Pick Up allegedly belonging to suspects who conned the U.S. national, Anastasios Belesis, more than 20 Billion Shillings in a gold scam.

Belesis, 46, was allegedly defrauded by police deserter Martin Bwayo masquerading as Capt Bod alongside Enock Katwesigye who disguised as Col Frank and city lawyer, Simon Peter Musangala.

A day after the suspects were charged and remanded to Kitalya Prison by Anti-Corruption Court Grade One Magistrate, Albert Asiimwe, CID investigators assigned by Grace Akullo, the CIID Director have impounded a Hilux Pick UP valued at more than 200 million shillings.

CID Spokesperson, Charles Twine, said the impounding of the vehicle is part of the measures investigators are taking to ensure all property that was purchased using money conned from Belesis is attached to recover the victim’s money.

Twine said there are also land titles and houses of the suspects that they are being documented in liaison with the ministry of lands and would be attached once it is proven that they were acquired with the period when Belesis was tricked.

“These people had bought new cars and one of them is this Pick Up which is more than 200 million shillings. It is one of the latest models but they have put a number plate of about five years ago . We are still investigating all property acquired using this money and we’re sure we shall recover the money,” Twine said.

Bwayo and Katwesigye who are residents of Kyaliwajjala, Lukade Zone in Kira Municipality in Wakiso District and Musangala a resident of Munyonyo, Makindye Division in Kampala District were charged with money laundering, facilitating money laundering and cheating.

The trio allegedly committed the crime between March 2020 and February 2021 while at Stanbic Bank Crested Towers Branch in Kampala District. CID is currently hunting for the other accomplices who are believed to be eight in number.

Belesis told CID team at Kibuli that his woes started last year when he met a one Charles in Kenya who convinced him that he knew Ugandans who sell genuine gold and in large quantities. The victim travelled from the United States to Kenya in 2019 to purchase gold but he did not succeed.

As he was planning to fly back to the US, he met Charles who befriended him and later told him about gold in Uganda. Charles, according to Belesis, gave him the contact of Capt Frank who he later met when he travelled to Uganda. 

Bwayo told him he deals with only registered and recognized mineral companies. Belesis was told to register his company, acquire a license from geological minerals department, a certificate from Uganda Revenue Authority and National Social Security Fund. 

All these processes made him believe he was dealing with genuine gold dealers until he realized the group was subjecting him to endless expenses in the guise of legitimizing his business. Belesis case is being investigated on GEF 086/2021.

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