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News: Justice Ministry files charges on suspects of murder, serious crime against ride taxi drivers in Addis Abeba

Drivers protesting against the brutal murder of their colleagues and calling for justice on 21 July. Photo: Screeshoot

Addis Ababa: The Ministry of Justice has announced that it has filed charges of murder and serious crimes against 12 individuals who are suspected of committed series of murders and robbery against half a dozen ride drivers providing transport services.

The Directorate of Special Crimes at the Ministry said it has completed an investigation on the crime of murdering people and collecting money illegally in collaboration with the Addis Abeba Police Commission.

The investigation led to the arrest of 12 suspects who are now charged by the Ministry, which disclosed that the suspects usually establish a good rapport with the drivers and create trust before they commit the crime. According to the statement, the crime took place either at the outskirts of Addis Abeba or at towns around it.

The findings of the investigation indicated that the suspects would stab drivers, strangle their necks with ropes, shoot them dead with guns and then dispose their bodies, loot their vehicles and other properties, according to the statement. The Ministry of Justice also disclosed the existence of another organized group that buys the looted vehicles at a low price illegally and sells them back by changing their types and posting license plates.

The statement released by the Ministry indicated that most of the perpetrators of the crime had been imprisoned. In the indictment records, the group killed three people and took away their vehicles and other properties they could found in the cars.

An analysis by Addis Standard in August 2021 regarding the increasing number of deaths and robberies among ride taxi drivers and reported that six private transport drivers have died, and that 9 code-3 license-plated vehicles were stolen only in the preceding month of July. AS

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