The police in Enugu State, South-east Nigeria, have paraded two people for alleged abduction of travellers along Ugwogo Nike-Opi-Nsukka Road in the state.
They were paraded at the Police Headquarters in Enugu, on Tuesday, alongside 13 others who were arrested for allegedly committing various offences.
The police spokesperson in Enugu State, Daniel Ndukwe, who addressed reporters during the parade on behalf of the State Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Ammani, said a female victim escaped from the suspected kidnappers.
Mr Ndukwe, a deputy superintendent of police, gave the names of the arrested suspected kidnappers as Sani Usman, 25, and Landi Usman, 30.
The suspects hail from Sokoto State in North-west Nigeria.
Rescue of kidnap victims
The police spokesperson said the 15 suspects – all males – were arrested, in separate operations, for various offences including murder, kidnapping, armed robbery, rape, unlawful possession of firearms and fraud.
“These arrests led to rescue of seven kidnap victims and the recovery of seven firearms, two motorcycles, one dagger, cash sum of N701,000 and other incriminating exhibits, in the separate operations carried out by police operatives of the command, with support from other security forces and law-abiding citizens,” he said.
Mr Ndukwe said, in separate operation on Sunday, police officers serving in Igbo-Eze North Police Divisional Headquarters in collaboration with Forest Guard and Neighbourhood Watch Group at about 1 p.m. rescued four other kidnap victims – two males and two females, who hail from Kogi State.
The police spokesperson said the victims were rescued from kidnappers in a forest after a shoot-out with the officers at Aisha-Ette, a community in Igbo-Eze North Council Area of the state.
“The kidnappers, most of whom escaped with varying degrees of gunshot wounds, abandoned the victims due to the superior firepower of the operatives,” he said.
He said the victims, who were kidnapped on 23 June at about 9 p.m., were asked to pay N10 million as ransom before they were rescued.
Mr Ndukwe said, in another operation, the police serving at Adani Police Divisional Headquarters in a joint operation with troops of the Nigerian army, Forest Guards as well as Neighbourhood Watch Group on Sunday rescued an unidentified woman and her child.
The two victims were earlier kidnapped at Ngene-Ukwu along Adani-Opanda Road in Uzo Uwani Local Government Area of the state, according to the police.
“The joint team is still on the trail of the suspected kidnappers,” he said.
Mr Ndukwe said the police, on 18 June, busted a four-member criminal gang which allegedly engaged in armed robbery, abduction, rape and fraud.
He gave their names as Uche Ede, 21; Paschal Chukwu, 25; Joshua Okonkwo, 22 – all from Nkanu East Council Area, and Moses Nnaji, 20, who hails from Nkanu West Council Area.
“Their arrest is as a result of the operatives’ tactical response to series of complaints, alleging that the suspects used commercial mini buses to abduct their unsuspecting victims within Enugu metropolis, particularly young females to secluded locations, where they robbed, raped and transferred sums of money out of their bank accounts at gunpoint,” he said.
‘Physically-challenged caught with rifles’
In another development, police operatives, during a stop and search operation along Ugwuomu- Nike in Enugu East Council Area, on 20 June, intercepted a motorcycle rider carrying a physically-challenged person.
“Upon search conducted on the rider and the male passenger, two locally made guns and workshop tools were recovered from the passenger, Edeh Longinus, 47, who is physically challenged and of Ohuani-Owo in Nkanu East Council Area,” he said.
“Preliminary investigation shows that he is a gun fabricator and runner, with a workshop in Amanvu in Nkalagu Community of Ebonyi State,” Mr Ndukwe added.
Man arrested over fake transfer of N3.5 million
The police spokesperson said, in a similar operation, police detectives serving at Trans-Ekulu Police Divisional Headquarters arrested Mmesoma Linus, 26, on 23 June for allegedly issuing a fake credit alert of N3.5 million to an unsuspecting timber dealer in Nsukka Timber Market on 28 November, 2021.
“The suspect confessed to the crime, while a video clip intercepted in the course of the ongoing investigation, shows him spraying cash in a nightclub, which is reasonably suspected to be the proceeds of his criminal activities,” he stated.
“The suspect will be arraigned and prosecuted accordingly, once investigation into the case is concluded.”
Mr Ndukwe reassured residents of the state that the police were committed to protecting their lives and property and ensuring peace and order in the state.
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