The police in Ondo State say they are increasing surveillance of banks following the rising armed robbery cases in the state.
The state commissioner of police, Adie Undie, who spoke to reporters on Wednesday in Akure, also lamented the frequency of banditry and kidnapping in the state.
On Monday, a group of bandits attacked a commercial bank in Ido-Ani, killing no fewer than seven persons.
Although the police arrested one person in connection with the robbery, the larger group is still at large.
Mr Undie, however, said an investigation was ongoing to unmask the brains behind the robbery.
According to him, security surveillance have been scaled up around bank premises across the 18 local government areas of the state.
Meanwhile, a gang of kidnappers terrorising communities in Ondo State has been arrested.
Police say one Omoghae Igbegbon, a member of the gang, was nabbed after carrying out a kidnap operation. He reportedly dispossessed the victim of N185,000 before demanding for N30million ransom.
Mr Undie said other members of the gang were smoked out of their hiding at Ibilo, Edo State, following several days of investigation.
“On the 2nd April 2019 at about 0715hrs, one Prince Omoghae Igbegbon ‘m’ of A3 Senior Staff Quarters, Nifor, Benin City Edo State was attacked by unknown gunmen numbering six along Akunnu Akoko/Auga Akoko Road Ondo State,” said the police commissioner.
“The hoodlums robbed him of a cash sum of one hundred and eighty-five thousand naira (185,000.00k) and also abducted him into the bush. The abductors demanded thirty million naira (30,000,000.00k) as a ransom for his release.
“On the 3rd of April, 2019, a team of policemen with members of vigilante group trailed the kidnappers to their den at Ibilo, Edo State.
“After an exchange of gunfire, the kidnappers fled to an unknown destination leaving behind one pump action, one double barrel and two single barrel guns. The victim escaped to a community in Ibilo where he explained his ordeal in the hands of the kidnappers.
“The police placed the community on red alert to watch out for any strange face. Thereafter, one Ismaila Wakili ‘m’ aged 19 years, from Niger State whom the victim later recognized as one of the kidnappers was arrested and handed over to the Police.
“Upon interrogation, the suspect confessed to the commission of the crime and mentioned other members of his gang.
“The suspect led a team of detectives to the hideouts of the hoodlums at Aduwawa in Benin City, Edo state where the following members of the gang; Abdullahi Sanni ‘m’ aged 33years from Kogi State, Mohammed Abdullahi ‘m’ aged 36years from Sokoto State, Umoru Usman ‘m’ aged 25years, from Kebbi state, Sheu Usman ‘m’ aged 25years from Niger State were arrested and Ismaila Wakili identified them to be members of the kidnap gang terrorizing Akoko axis of Ondo State.”
Mr Undie said efforts were still ongoing to arrest other fleeing members of the gang. He said those already apprehended would be charged to the court upon the conclusion of investigations.