Operatives of the Inspector-General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team have smashed a kidnap gang in Imo State, which raped a Medical Doctor four times.
The victim was said to have been abducted just as she was about to drive into her compound.
It was only after her husband had paid the ransom demanded by the gang and his wife got home that her worried family members got to know that she had been serially raped.
IRT Operatives led by a Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari, who went after the gang following the directive of the IGP, Mohammed Adamu, have arrested about 16 members of the dreaded gang.
Police said the gang was part of those that had been terrorising Enugu, Imo and Abia States.
Operatives recovered five cars and 10 phones belonging to different abducted victims from the suspects.
Also recovered from them were AK47 rifle, a Pump Action rifle, five locally made pistols and some cartridges.
According to the police, the gang has a penchant for raping their female victims.
The gang’s operating camp is located in Osisioma Local Government Area of Abia State.
Three weeks after the IGP’s directive, Kyari and his men swooped on 16 of the suspects, identified as Nwazuoke Ijima, aka XX; Maduabuchukwu Amamba, aka Commander; Eze Chikwe aka Afo; Chinoso Amadi; Chimeremueze Benson, aka Atuma; Ugochukwu Uzoma; Ifeanyi Sylvanus; David Nweke aka Rugged; Ikechukwu Erondu; Abraham Nna; Chijioke Azuka; Ugochukwu Obi, aka Muchocho; Iwejo Chibuna; Ohasonu Sunday; Nwachukwu Stanley; and Godswill Ihemere, aka Ojaba.
The suspects allegedly confessed to several abductions, including that of a Reverend Father.
The gang members distanced themselves from the rape of the Medical Doctor, pointing at Sylvanus.
They explained that it was against their gang’s code to rape female victims.
They expressed shock over Sylvanus’s action, claiming that he has been punished for his action.
One of the gang leaders, Amamba, 30, explained that he entered the kidnapping world just last year.
He further said: “It was my friends, Muchocho, Ojaba and Steven that initiated me into kidnapping.
“I met them at Osisioma area of Aba, where we used to smoke Indian hemp and cocaine.
“Before I met these friends, I was a member of a local vigilante group at Nkpor area of Anambra State.
“It was my friend Chiemeka that introduced me into this business.
“My father was sick and there was no money to treat him.
“Chiemeka took me to the joint where I met others.
“In January 2019, we went for a robbery at Amafife area of Osisioma, where we robbed a woman returning from her shop.
“We snatched her handbag.
“Chiemeka said that he has been monitoring the woman for a long time.
“We were four that went for the operation.
“We found N350,000 inside her handbag.
“We went with two pump action rifles, which I was using when I was a vigilante member in Nkpor.
“I collected N75,000 as my share of the loot.
“We then kidnapped the Medical Doctor.
The woman resides at immaculate area of Aba.
“Someone residing at the area, known as Chucks, brought information about the woman to us.
“We kidnapped her when she was driving into her compound in a Toyota Highlander car.”
Amamba said five members went for the operation of the abduction of the medical doctor.
After abducting her, she was taken to Ojaba’s house at Amokpoife in Osisioma area.
The informant, Chucks, had told the gang that it could squeez at least N20 million out of the woman’s family.
However, when negotiation started, the victim’s husband was only able to pay N2 million before she was released.
Amamba said: “One of our gang members, Ifeanyi, was in charge of keeping watch over the woman.
“Nobody knew when he raped her.
“It was after the ransom had been paid that I heard about the rape.
“When I asked him, he confessed.
“He said that he raped her four times.
“I was angry with him, thus I deducted N40,000 from his share of the ransom as his punishment.
“I gave him just N120,000.
“We sold the woman’s car to Sunny, who lives in Imo State, for N400,000.
“I got N280,000 from the operation.”
The gang also abducted a lawyer in January 2020, along Obingwa Road, Aba.
The lawyer was taken to Ekaru area of Osisioma.
The gang abducted the lawyer by using their vehicle to block his.
The lawyer spent three days in the kidnappers’ den.
Amamba recounted: “The lawyer had only been with us for just a night before I got news that my father was dead and I had to leave camp.
“I demanded for N1.5 million ransom because I needed money urgently for my father’s burial.
“But the lawyer’s people paid just N200,000.
“I got N34,000 as my share.
“My colleagues took the lawyer’s car and sold it.
“I also attempted to kidnap a man driving a Toyota Avalon car along Obingwa area of Aba.
“The man sighted us, abandoned his car and ran away.
“We took his car.
“I sold it to Sunny for N200,000.
“We then kidnapped a man at Opkulumuobo.
“He was driving a Lexus 330 car.
“We traced the man to his house.
“The time was about 9pm.
“We followed him to his gate and kidnapped him.
“We also took his car with us.
“We sold the car for N300,000, but the man later escaped from our camp.
“Before then, XX had stolen my rifles and ran away.
“Another friend gave me a rifle.
“I called XX and asked him to return my rifles.
“He asked me to come and collect them.
“When I went there, police arrested me.”
Another suspect, Ejima, 33, said: “My father died when I was still very young.
“My mother is just a farmer.
“I learned panel beating, but master later chased me away because I couldn’t pay him for my apprenticeship.
“I returned to our village.
“A man in my village, Fabian, taught me everything I know about kidnapping.
“That was in 2017.”
Ejima further stated that his first operation was along Isiala-Ngwa.
He and Fabian kidnapped the victim and took him to Egbede village at Osisioma.
He said: “I don’t know how much was paid, but I was given N20,000.
“The second operation was around Umuahia Expressway.
“It was at night.
“We abducted a man and I got a share of N5,000 for my role.
“One day, I decided that I was going to stop working with Fabian because he wasn’t giving me good money.
“I got a locally made pistol, which I showed Fabian.
“He said what I had was a toy; he then brought his own, which was an AK47 rifle.
“We kidnapped a man at Isiala-Ngwa and I was given N40,000.
“I then bought pump action rifle for N400,000.”
He said he and Fabian had a fall out and he had to go and form his own gang.
Ejima said that it was Ojaba that assisted him to form his gang.
“He remembered that Ojaba called him after he was released from prison and told him that he knew two people who had two pump action rifles.
“He asked Ejima to meet him at an agreed venue.
“I met him and two others at Amakife and then I met Commander and Chiemeka.
“We kidnapped a woman and took away her car.
“The woman paid N2 million.
“I got a total of N390,000 because I cheated my gang members.
“We kidnapped a man at Ariharia Junction and took him to my village in Amakifie.
“We kept him in the bush.
“We collected N500,000 ransom.
“I collected the money on behalf of the gang and ran away.
“I used the money to buy pump action rifle for N480,000.
“We also kidnapped a Reverend Father at Umuka area of Abia State.
“We took him to Nekaro village, where he spent four days with us.
“We collected N400,000 ransom from his family.
“We wanted to sell his car, but we started quarrelling amongst ourselves in his car.
“The quarrel was because we couldn’t find the Reverend Father’s phone.
“We were looking for it and in the process, we had an accident.
“One of our gang members, Obinna, forgot his phone in the Reverend Father’s car while we quickly fled from the scene of the accident.
“On January 2020, we kidnapped a man at Harriaas Road.
“I went with Chinoso and Victor for that operation.
“We went with a pump action rifle, a pistol and a double barrel gun.
“We kidnapped three persons, including a woman.
“The first person kidnapped among them was driving a Lexus car.
“I used his car to kidnap the man and the woman driving an Infinity car.
“We abandoned the infinity car and took the three of them to Umuokiri.
“We kept them in an abandoned building.
“I left all the victims with my boys, but in the morning, I learned that Special Anti-Robbery Squad Operatives stormed our camp, attacked and killed two of our members.
“The policemen rescued the victims.
“The next day, I called Chinoso; I didn’t know he had been arrested.
“I wanted us to go for another operation.
“I was at Toyimas Junction when Police came to arrest me.
“I handed my rifle over to them, promising that I would never kidnap again