Police arrest 10 for kidnapping, armed robbery in Akwa Ibom

Ten suspected armed robbers were paraded on Monday by the police in Akwa Ibom State.

The police said the 10 men belonged to a deadly 11-member gang of criminals that was involved in armed robbery and kidnapping in Oruk Anam Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom state.

Among those paraded were Ikoidem Sampson, a physically challenged man, Emediong Emmanuel, Ukeme Ufot Akpan, Ifiok Ime David and Nyakndue Mboutidem.

The Commissioner of Police, Akwa Ibom state, Murtala U. Mani, said the 11- member gang kidnapped two women in Oruk Anam on January 23 and held them hostage for six days, before the women were rescued by the police.

The police commissioner, who spoke through the Police Public Relations Officer, Cordelia Nwawe, said the suspected criminals were arrested by the police when they wanted to pick up the second part of the ransom money from the families of the victims.

Some locally-made pistols and cartridges recovered from the suspects were displayed at the police headquarters.

The police said the gang also invaded the home of one Inyang Willie Ubom of Ikot Osute village in Oruk Anam and robbed him of his mobile phone and N10, 000 at gun point.

Police said they were on the trail of the eleventh member of the gang.

One of the suspected criminals paraded by the police, Emediong Emmanuel, confessed to journalists that he and the gang demanded N5million ransom from the families of the women they kidnapped, but that they were only able to get N180, 000 from them.

He said the women were kept inside a bush in Enen Ekefre village for the six days.

Mr Emmanuel, who said his role in the kidnap was to pick up the women on motorcycle from the point where they were abducted and ferried them into the bush, told journalists that his own share of the ransom was N30, 000.

The suspects are to be charged to court at the end of investigation, police said.

The commissioner of police appealed to members of the public to be vigilant and also report suspicious activities in their neighbourhood to the police.

“Akwa Ibom is not a place for crime,” Mr. Mani said. “If you come from anywhere to commit crime here, we will get you wherever you are.

“We will keep our promise to Akwa Ibom people: we will rid this state of criminals.”

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