How heartbroken German lost love and Sh5 million

A 66-year-old German pensioner residing in Malindi town, Kilifi County is living a distraught life after his girlfriend disappeared with his money.

Reiner Hans Hermann says his 24-year-old girlfriend stole Sh5.2 million from his house at Harbour Key cottages in Malindi town. He also claims she has been using anonymous people to call and threaten him, putting his life in danger.

The German who first visited Kenya in January 2019 as a tourist and fell in love with its serenity at the Coast, returned and opted to settle down in Malindi, but now lives like a fugitive.

He abandoned his villa and has been moving from one town to another, in what he calls a security measure, as he ponders on his next move.

Returned to Kenya

“I returned to Kenya with a lot of money that I planned to buy a house and also invest in irrigation projects. And since I was travelling to the Coast, my friends from Nairobi advised me to get a house in Mtwapa near Pirates Beach, which I got when I arrived, and rented,” he said.

His love for the woman started during his first visit to Kenya when he walked into a resort to quench his thirst with a cold beer. It was love at first sight and two days later, he bought her a new cellphone and they went dancing at Danka Club in Mtwapa.

“On April 29, 2019, I helped her move to a new bedsitter and she took some days off from work to accompany me to Malindi to purchase a house. I bought my first house at the Harbor Key resort from an Italian I had met in Nairobi earlier,” he said.

The two moved into the new house on October 29 after he acquired it and he lived with her as his fiancée. She also acted as his advisor and translator.

It is during this period that their love blossomed and Hermann decided to take their relationship a notch higher, visiting her rural home in Siaya. He even started supporting her family financially.

In his quest to prove his love, Hermann flew with the woman to Zanzibar in September last year to celebrate her 24th birthday.

To drink coffee

But after their return, Hermann woke up in the morning and went to drink coffee at a nearby restaurant and on returning home, the woman was gone. The main door had been locked from outside.

“After 1 O’clock, I got suspicious and asked my neighbors who said they had not seen her, and so I waited for some time before I reported her as a missing person at the Malindi police station,” he said.

The matter was booked by the Malindi Tourist Police Unit and two officers accompanied him to his house where he was shocked to find that the suitcase which had the money had been destroyed and the money was missing.

Boxes in suitcase

“I had two boxes in the suitcase, each containing €20,000 (Sh2.6 million) and all was gone. I just concluded that it was now a criminal case and I followed up with the police,” he said.

The pensioner said police vowed to ensure he gets justice, but his fiancée is still on the run. He suspects she conspired with some friends to steal the money, and that they could be the ones now threatening him.

Malindi Sub-County police commander John Kemboi said he was aware of the incident, but not of threats to the man’s life.

He advised Hermann to report the matter to any police station for the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to take up the case.

“Tell him to go to the nearest police station and report the matter. The DCI will take it up and action shall be taken against the culprit,” he said.

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