Operatives of the Imo State Police Command said they have arrested a wanted kidnap kingpin who has been on the run for a long time.
They said that a kidnapped victim was also rescued unhurt during the raid.
The Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Michael Abattam, said in a statement on Thursday that the breakthrough was a result of vigorous raids embarked by the police on all criminal hideouts in the forests, collaborating with the vigilante groups of the various communities.
He said that the operatives on 29/8/2022 at 12.30 pm, after a diligent gathering of information of identified terror camps in the State, raided a terror camp in the forest at Ohuba village in Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State.
The statement reads, “The hoodlums on sighting the police operatives immediately engaged them in a gun duel, but were overwhelmed by the superior firepower of the police, resulting in the arrest of one Amarachi Amadi aka Ishiegburumma ‘m’ aged 28 years, the leader of a notorious kidnapping gang who is on the wanted list of the Command. He sustained bullet wounds during the gun battle while others escaped with bullet injuries into the forest.
“Operatives while combing the forest saw the kidnapped victim, Uzondu Ikeazuta ‘m’ aged 45 years, a native of Isiala Mbano Local Government Area of Imo State, in chains. He was freed unhurt. In the same vein, the police recovered the following exhibits: one cut to size single barrel gun with six rounds of live cartridges, one locally made double barrel shotgun, one bus with the registration number WER 04 XB, one dagger, one ATM card, substances suspected to be Indian Hemp, Airtel recharge cards, charms, ropes used to tie victims and three cell phones.
“In the course of debriefing the victim, it was revealed that he was kidnapped by a five-man armed gang, on the 28/8/2022 at 1300 hours, at Imo Specialist Hospital junction Umuguma in Owerri West Local Government Area of Imo State. While in their custody, he was subjected to inhuman tortures that, almost resulted in the cutting off his manhood for ritual purposes.”
According to the police, the victim said that the kidnappers were demanding for a ransom of One Million Seven Hundred Thousand Naira (N1,700,000.00) before he could be released from their captivity.
The statement added, “The suspect while undergoing interrogation, admitted being the Capone of the kidnapping syndicate and confessed to several kidnapping cases, but could remember vividly seven and how they beheaded one of their victims, Justice Ikechukwu Francis Okoroji on the 5th of January, 2020. His confession has led to the arrest of one Oriaku Lucky ‘m’ aged 26 of Umugologo Ohuba in Ohaji/Egbema LGA and Peace Victor Sunday ‘f’ aged 19 of Unah Eket in Akwa Ibom State.”