Cattle Rustling: Police ‘kill 104 bandits’ in Zamfara

Police on patrol
Nigeria Police on patrol

The police said on Friday that 104 bandits have been killed in a special anti-rustling operation conducted in Zamfara State on Thursday.

The police said 50 hideouts of the bandits were also destroyed and hundreds of stolen cattle and sheep recovered and handed to the owners.

One police officer was killed during the operation in Birnin Mogaji, Zurmi Local Government Area, police spokesperson Jimoh Moshood said in a statement.

Birnin Mogaji and surrounding communities have become a regular target of bandits who have been undertaking a series of robberies in the state in recent years. The bandits often target herders for their livestock, farms for their produce and even kidnap persons for humongous ransom.

Mr Moshood, an acting deputy police commissioner, said police officers on a patrol in Zurmi LGA were ambushed by the bandits, but sharply repelled the attacks.

Normal activities have been restored to the communities as of Friday afternoon, the police said.

The attack comes as Inspector-General Ibrahim Idris sent Habila Joshak, the deputy inspector-general in charge of operations, to oversee police operations in Zamfara State, all largely aimed at checking worsening banditry.

Mr Idris dispatched a contingent of 1,000 police officers to the state on November 9, under Police Joint Intervention Team. The team included seven units of Police Mobile Force (PMF) headed by an assistant police commissioner, Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU), Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS), Police Anti-Bomb (EOD) Squad, and conventional police officers

The police said the operation has so far led to the arrest of 85 suspects, recovery of 27 AK-47 rifles and 52 locally made, amongst other weapons used by the criminals.

Two hundred and sixty-nine cattle, 109 sheep were recovered and handed over to their owners.

Plans to parade the suspects arrested within the period are already underway, police said.

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