Kidnapper was caught while withdrawing ransom from ATM
The Rivers State Police Command, Tuesday, paraded 13 suspects for various alleged offences including kidnapping and armed robbery.
In a statement, Tunde Ogunsakin, the state’s Police Commissioner, said that two kidnappers and 11 armed robbers were arrested in Port Harcourt by the police, in different operations.
According to Mr. Ogunsakin, police operatives who were acting on a piece of intelligence, on February 17, arrested one David Francis, a suspected kidnapper, at a Fidelity bank branch along Trans Amadi Road in Port Harcourt.
The police stated that Mr. Francis was apprehended while he was trying to withdraw money purportedly meant to augment the ransom for the release of a victim that was recently kidnapped in Akwa Ibom State.
“Francis later led the operatives from the Rivers State Police Command to the hide-out of his accomplice, Edwin Ekpeyoung, who was arrested after some resistance by armed men from the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS,” Mr. Ogunsakin added.
In a separate arrest, Mr. Ogunsakin said that a gang of armed robbers had opened fire on a police patrol team at 1.45 p.m. on Valentine’s Day at Ogunabali Area, near St. Patrick Hospital.
According to the police, those arrested included Blaid Herbert, Achebule Amadi, Lawal Ibrahim – a gang leader who was released on bail in November, 2013 – Godwin Peters, Udo Godswill, Victor Monday, Precious Agiobu, and Chinazo Ihesinaula.
“A special team patroling on Valentine’s Day saw a bandit of robbers shooting. This prompted the police to immediately engage them in an exchange of gunfire that lasted for 33 minutes,” said Mr. Ogunsakin. “The gang was, however, overwhelmed by the superior fire power of our men who displayed their resilience in the course of the gun exchange. The gang which was overpowered by the police later ran from the scene leaving behind a grey-coloured Toyota Highlander Jeep, with registration number LSR 825 AP. One Chinoso Ihesinor was arrested while the sum of One Million Naira (N1,000,000) was recovered from him.”
The police also said that they arrested another gang of robbers along Umuokoro. It was led by one Lawal Ibrahim, a suspected notorious robber who was fingered in a robbery incident along Shell Quarters in September, 2013, and who was released on bail by a court of law.
The Police Commissioner stated that he would continue to make intelligence-led policing the cardinal point of police operation in Rivers State.
“I intend to continue with an aggressive onslaught in the state against criminals until the crime situation is brought to near zero level,” he said.