The Nigeria Police Force has said that it has arrested 1,412 suspects for various violent crimes nationwide within the last 2 months.
The Force spokesman, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, made the disclosure on Thursday, 13 July, 2023, at the Force Intelligence Bereau’s Intelligence Responce Team (FIB-IRT) Base in Abuja.
Attributing the arrest of the suspects to the Force’s ongoing efforts to combat crime and criminality and curb the proliferation of illegal weapons in the country, Adejobi explained that of the number, 548 were for armed robbery, 242 for kidnapping, 365 for murder/homicide, while 237 of them were for rape/defilement.
Furthermore, 350 illicit firearms, and 4,055 ammunition of various calibers were equally recovered from across the country within the period under review, while 113 kidnap suspects were rescued unhurt and re-united with their families.
Prominent amongst these breakthroughs was the arrest of one Yusuf Ismael Isah aged 32, who, investigations revealed, was part of the 7-man gang that launched a fatal attack on the convoy of Apostle Johnson Suleiman, the Founder of Omega Fire Ministries Worldwide, on October 21, 2022, along Benin – Auchi road. The attack saw the loss of lives of six (6) people, including 3 police officers, who were gruesomely murdered.
Intelligence also revealed that the
7-man syndicate had been actively involved in various kidnapping operations within Edo State and its environs and had carried out about 4 kidnapping operations between 2021 and 2023, before the gang was eventually bursted by the Police.
Exhibits recovered from the suspect, who was arrested in Ondo State include 5 AK47 Rifles, 2 K2 Assault Rifles, 180 Rounds of Live Ammunition, 4 suspected locally made IEDs, 1 pistol, and 4 rounds of 9mm ammunition.
Similarly, 5 suspects were apprehended in Abuja for kidnapping a foreign national and obtaining a ransom of 2,000 US dollars from his relatives.
The suspects, Emu Larry Chidiebere ‘m’ 34, Samuel Balogun ‘m’ 22, Williams Banjo ‘m’ 28, Babatunde Femi ‘m’ 30, and Nneka Opara ‘f’ 32, while holding the victim hostage in an apartment from May 30, 2023 to June 2, 2023, took pictures of him and forwarded the pictures and threat messages to his girlfriend in Zurich, who eventually sent them the ransome via Western Union on June 1, 2023.
Adejobi further disclosed that the Police has sustained a continuous assault on the camps of some non-state actors in the South-East enforcing an illegal sit at home order particularly in Enugu, Imo, and Ebonyi States.
In Enugu, 4 suspects were neutralized following a gun duel with operatives of the Force on Friday 7th July, 2023 while 1 AK47 with 19 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition, and 2 molotov cocktails were recovered.
In Ebonyi, 17 suspects were arrested following a raid on the hideout of secessionist agitators on 5th and 6th of July, 2023, while 1 locally made revolver, 2 vehicle number plates and 3 live ammunition were recovered.
Similarly, in Imo, police operatives arrested 26 hoodlums following the murder of a young man in their rampage, and successfully recovered 5 firearms, 66 live ammunition and several other exhibits.
Meanwhile, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Kayode Adeolu Egbetokun, while reiterating the commitment of the Nigeria Police Force to continually ensure the safety and security of all and sundry, has emphasized that his administration “will leave no stone unturned in the effort to suppress and decimate criminality and the heinous activities of non-state actors who cause pain, hardship, and sorrows to innocent law abiding members of the Nigerian society”.