KIGALI - The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and the traffic police unit, in collaboration with agents from International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) have impounded 40 vehicles in a joint nationwide exercise aimed at seizing cars brought in the country through theft or bearing false document.
According to the director of CID, Costa Habyara, of the 40 vehicles impounded, 10 were found to have been stolen from different countries, especially in Japan, Dubai and others.
The operation ended yesterday evening and officers were conducting a thorough checking of vehicles’ engine and chassis numbers.
The other 30 vehicles that were impounded had chassis numbers that were not corresponding with the number in the vehicle’s card.The operation saw 1,539 vehicles inspected including those with foreign number plates. Four vehicles baring foreign number plates were impounded for possessing the chassis number that did not correspond with the numbers on the vehicle’s cards.
“Interpol gave us access to the data base of vehicles stolen abroad and we used it check the numbers listed in it. We also used the opportunity to check the chassis numbers of other vehicles,” Habyara said.
He said that the operation was carried in Burundi last week and the Rwandan police took part in it as observers. “Here in Rwanda, we had the Burundian policemen on several check points but they were just observers they were not checking,” he said. The CID boss also said that they will have to liaise with Interpol after investigations on how to return the stolen vehicles to their original countries and handed back to their owners.
“For the remaining 30 vehicles, we will have to check with Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) how these errors happened or whether there were some changes made of vehicles later when they were the on road,” Habyara said.
Most of the vehicles checked and those impounded are 4x4 but Habyara said that all types of vehicles were checked.
Genuine vehicle owners who fulfilled the requirements were issued with clearance certificates bearing an Interpol stamp.