Somali forces raid warehouse, seize counterfeit dollars plant in Mogadishu

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In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence show U.S currency seized during the raid in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)

Criminal networks continue to run several black dollar plants across Mogadishu in which fraudsters convince unsuspecting people they can turn black bills into U.S. dollars using chemicals

By Judy Maina, judy.maina@alleastafrica.com

NAIROBI – Somali security forces have seized hundreds of thousands in counterfeit dollars, one of the largest netting of fake greenbacks ever in the Somali capital, officials said on Tuesday.

Acting upon an intelligence tipoff, soldiers from Somali intelligence agency swarmed into a villa in Mogadishu Waberi neighborhood, discovering automatic black dollar cleaning machines, chemical solutions used to clean black dollars.

Monday’s overnight raid which was launched after a week-long investigation that began when suspicious packages began coming in through the unmarked house also yielded stacks of cardboard boxes thought to be contained black dollars, intelligence officials told Alleastafrica.

In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence show U.S currency seized during the raid in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)
In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence show U.S currency seized during the raid in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)

Five suspects were also arrested during the raid which resulted in the death of one soldier who was shot dead by the gangs in the house who tried to resist troops’ attempt to access the premise, officials say.

In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence show U.S currency seized during the raid in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)
In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence shows the house raided by troops in which the criminal gangs used to issue U.S currency in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)

The suspected believed to be in custody in the Somali capital are expected in court to face various charges.

In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence shows U.S currency seized during the raid in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)
In this hand out photo from Somali intelligence shows U.S currency seized during the raid in Mogadishu. (NISA Photo)

According to security officials, criminal networks continue to run several black dollar plants across Mogadishu in which fraudsters convince unsuspecting people they can turn black bills into U.S. dollars using chemicals.

Those sites have not been identified, but police are looking into how many US currency counterfeit sites are already out there.

The long chaotic horn of Africa nation has lacked effective central government since 1991, allowing criminal networks to operate freely and evade justice by bribing security officials.

(Alleastafrica reporter in Mogadishu contributed to this report, editing by John Thiongo)

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