Police smash notorious kidnap syndicates, robbery gangs, others in Rivers
Police smash deadly members of armed robbery, kidnapping and illicit drug trafficking syndicates in different operations across Rivers state
Published By: Ayorinde Oluokun
By Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Police operatives in Rivers have arrested deadly members of armed robbery, kidnapping and illicit drug trafficking syndicates in different operations across the state over the past week.
Also, illicit drugs, ammunition, different calibre of firearms, and stolen vehicles were recovered while kidnap victims were also rescued during the operations.
Rivers Commissioners of Police, CP Nwonyi Polycarp Emeka who gave details of the operations at a press briefing in Port Harcourt said some of the suspects died during a gun duel with the police.
Giving details of the operations, CP Emeka said, “On 1st November 2023 at about 4:00 pm, following credible information received about suspicious and clandestine movement of notorious gang members of armed robbery syndicate, who have been on the wanted list of the Command checked in the Hotel located at Chokocho along Etche road, in Etche L.G.A of the State.
“Operatives of Octopus strike force immediately swung into action, the notorious gang leader in a desperate bid to escape arrest, opened fire on the team of operatives but was brought down by the superior firepower of the police. However, he was rushed to the Hospital for medical treatment but was confirmed dead by the Doctor on duty.
CP Emeka said members of the gang had robbed a victim (name withheld) on 3rd March 2023 at about 8:30 pm at Rumodara, Port Harcourt. According to him, the suspected gang leader shot the victim in his left leg which was later amputated.
He said they also snatched his Ash colour Geely Coolray Salon car valued at N13 million in addition to theft of his two handsets, Samsung Galaxy Note 20, and Techno Phantom 1, both valued at N850,, 000 .00 and other personal valued properties.
“At the end of the encounter with the Police, One AK47 rifle, two magazines, and 21 rounds of ammunition of 7.62mm, police handcuff with key were recovered. Also, the receivers of the stolen vehicle who are one Yakubu Imman Abdullahi aged 35yrs, and Nuhu Saleh aged 41yrs were arrested. Police are on trail of the other fleeing members of his gang,” said the CP.
Also, the Commissioner of Police revealed that on 1st November 2023 at about 5:30 pm, operatives rescued an abducted victim, (name withheld) in Rumuagholu, off Eligbam Road, Port Harcourt.
The victim, he said, was abducted by three armed men and a woman who whisked her away from Evo Road, GRA, Port Harcourt. According to him, Police operatives mobilized and swung into action by giving the gang of hoodlums a hot chase after being informed of the kidnapping.
“In an attempt to escape, the hoodlums forced the victim off the vehicle in motion along Port Harcourt-Aba Expressway, and they escaped. The victim was immediately rescued by the operatives. The operational vehicle of the gang which is a Toyota Camry blue colour, with registration no. Lagos KRD 881 CE, was later recovered,” he said.
The Police boss assured that the Investigation is in progress, and efforts have intensified to arrest fleeing hoodlums and recover their operational weapons.
He also revealed that operatives of the Command, while on stop and search at YKC roundabout in Port Harcourt on 1st November 2023 at about 10.30 pm, arrested one Victor James, 27 years old from Akwa Ibom State, with a locally made pistol and three cartridges.
“The suspect confessed to owing the locally made pistol and that he is into car snatching and kidnapping. Efforts are in place to arrest other members of the gang,” he said.
Also, on 15th October, 2023 at about 10 am while on routine patrol along NTA Road of Port Harcourt, police operatives sighted a black Toyota Corolla 2005 model with Rivers reg. number NDN 525 PG.
“The said car was brought to the base, and upon search, a locally made revolver pistol with 3 x 9mm bullets and a cutlass were recovered.
- Rivers crisis: Mother of man ‘shot dead’ during pro-Fubara protest cries out ‘
- Police dock 122 suspects over attack on Rivers Speaker’s residence
- Rivers crisis: 122 arrested over attack on Speaker’s residence
“The suspect, Destiny Amma, 29, who is also a suspected member of gangs of criminals terrorizing the State, was apprehended and he is being has been detained while preliminary investigation is underway.
Also, CP Emeka revealed that Operatives of the Command, on 27th October, 2023 at about 10:30 pm arrested one Prince Ikiriko, aged 23 years of No. 17 Obi Street, Mile 2 Diobu, with one locally fabricated revolver pistol and four rounds of live ammunition.
“On interrogation, he confessed to having been involved in several armed robbery activities along Aba-Port Harcourt Expressway, Port Harcourt.”
“Operatives of C4i Intelligent Unit, on 28th October 2023, at 5:20 pm acting on credible information received, intercepted one Volkswagen Bus with Reg/No MUS 910 YA, white. When the Driver sighted the Police the driver took to his heels, the Police gave him a hot chase and arrested him, upon search in his vehicle and recovered three hundred (300) parcels of weeds suspected to be India hemp.
“The suspect and the exhibit are in Police custody, the investigation is ongoing.
“Sequel to the transfer of an armed robbery case with one suspect, Uzoma Ubani, by Elelenwo Division on 22nd September 2023 at about 2 pm, Police operatives, C4i
Intelligent, Anti-Kidnapping Unit followed up on the case, which led to the arrest of one Kelvin Nwankwo, a native of Delta State who sustained a gunshot injury while escaping arrest.
“Items recovered include one locally made pistol with a live cartridge and a minibus, with registration number Abuja ABJ 93 XE at Gariki, Elelenwo Port Harcourt. The suspects specialized in robbing their victims at gunpoint of their valuables.
The injured suspect is receiving medical treatment while an investigation is in progress to trace and arrest other gang members.
Also, the Commissioner of Police said said sequel to the transfer of a case of kidnapping from Eneka Division where a victim was rescued, operatives of the Command in furtherance of investigation on 25th September, 2023 arrested one of the suspects named Chidiebere Chima at Oyigbo area of Rivers State.
The suspect from investigations was fingered in the kidnap of one victim name was withheld at Haastrup Estate, Port Harcourt, the CP said.
“The suspect was arrested at the Oil Mill/Eleme junction, where he came to pick up a supposed ransom of N3m (Three million naira).
“Upon interrogation, he confessed to having drugged the victim on 19th September 2023 at about 4 pm, took him somewhere in Eneka Bush, tied him, and removed almost all his teeth”.
“The suspect led operatives to recover the victim’s Toyota Corolla, a silver 2005 model not yet registered.
“Efforts to apprehend other members of the syndicate are in progress,” CP Emeka said.
The Rivers Police Commissioner emphasized that curbing crime in our society is a collective job.
He therefore appealed to all residents of Rivers State to be open and supportive of security operatives in the fight against crime and criminality.
He also urged parents/Guardians to caution their children/Wards against associating with people of nefarious characters.