A Chinese national who paid Shs151 million for tantalum minerals to Kenyans who promised to deliver the minerals has received soil instead of the minerals.

In an attempt to unearth fake gold scammers, detectives operating on intel have thwarted an attempt to transport two containers in Mombasa,  carrying tantalum minerals from Congo, bound for China.

The purported minerals had already been procured for hundreds of millions, unbeknown to the new proprietors who fell victim to the elaborate scam.

Preliminary inquiries suggest a connection to sham gold operators formerly based in Nairobi’s Kilimani area, utilizing Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).

The suspicion is that these scammers relocated to Mombasa, collaborating with officials from the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) and the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).

A Chinese entrepreneur reportedly deposited Ksh.151 million, only to discover that one container dispatched to China contained soil instead of the promised minerals.

This prompted an extensive pursuit, with detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) intercepting the shipment at the Mombasa container terminal (MCT).

The DCI officers believe the two containers were on the verge of being dispatched to China.

Following a protracted effort, the containers were opened, revealing reconditioned metallic drums filled with sand disguised as tantalum minerals.

At the core of the inquiry is a suspect named Lumumba Patrick, believed to be collaborating with fake gold scammers in Congo and Uganda.

A multi-agency team has extracted soil samples for further examination.