The Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) has, in surprising fashion, made radical changes to some of, previously, most visible units.
The changes, first announced through the agency’s social media pages, affect one of the most notorious investigation units of all times in modern Kenya; The Flying Squad.
Established in 1992, the core duties of the Flying Squad included dealing with motor vehicle syndicates, robbery with violence cases, frustrating organized criminal gangs, countering emerging crimes and responding to cases of public interests.
However, the unit has come under focus over its mafia style of policing making it one of the most dreaded police units in Kenya. Members of this sub-agency have also faced accusations of extra-judicial killings and serving the needs of mercenary politicians and business people. Equally, the Flying Squad was accused, at one point, of ‘leasing’ out weapons to hardcore criminals. This last act of absolute disbandment, in an event that commenced in 2018, is bound to extract interesting opinions from Kenya.
Below, is the statement circulated by the DCI following the official reorganization of its augmented units.
REORGANIZATION OF THE FLYING SQUAD AND SPECIAL CRIME PREVENTION UNITS
The Directorate of Criminal Investigations wishes to inform the public that after disbanding all the Flying Squad Sub-units within the Country, only the Headquarters Unit based in Nairobi remained.
With effect from today, the Unit has equally been disbanded. This marks the end of the Flying Squad Unit & no officer will present himself or herself to the public as such.
Equally, the Special Crime Prevention Unit (SCPU) has been scaled down to a smaller unit only based at Headquarters, Nairobi. It has been renamed Special Service Unit (SSU). Officers deployed in the unit have undergone intense training in & outside the country leading to upgrading of their competencies, enhanced skills & knowledge aimed at making the Unit more effective & efficient while maximising on the available resources.
To replace the Flying Squad and create an auxiliary support team on identified, researched and profiled crimes, another squad has been formed and named “STING SQUAD HEADQUARTERS” (SSH) that will have a maximum of 50 specialized trained officers who will respond to specific cases. The cases include; armed robberies, kidnappings, motor vehicle theft, sale & distribution of contraband and substandard goods. Before they are assembled, the competitively selected officers will undertake specialized courses within & outside the country touching on their core areas of operation.
Both Squads (SSU) and (SSH) will be linked directly to the Crime Research & Intelligence Bureau (CRIB) for intelligence driven operations alongside other augmenting Units including;Cybercrime, Ballistics, Scenes of Crime, Principal Crime Registrar, Crime Intelligence Unit, Homicide, (DNA, Toxicological, Chemistry and Biology Lab Units), currently being installed in the Ultra-Modern Forensic Laboratory. The units will work closely with other State Security Agencies for information and intelligence sharing, among others.
Both squads will be on standby 24/7 as needed in critical crime emergencies within the country.