It also announced the reintroduction of the ‘Operation Mkpochapu’, meant to flush out criminals from the state and ensure a crime-free Christmas period.
The state Commissioner of Police, Taiwo Lakanu, stated that on October 10, operatives of the command arrested a four-man gang, who allegedly kidnapped and robbed 52-year old Cordelia Chikere of Umuokanne community in Ohaji/Egbema Council Area of the state.
“The victim was kidnapped along the Oburugo-Obiti Road, Ohaji at gun point. The sum of N9,000 was stolen from her,” Lakanu added.
The commissioner said that a cordon and search operation by the operatives of the command led to the rescue of the victim inside a hut in the forest without any ransom paid.
He listed two of those involved in the kidnap as Onyinechi Ezengwu (26), who is also known as “Mosquito”, from Obiti, and Chinemerem Ohale (21) of Amuri Awomama in Oru East Local Government Areas of the state.
The CP also said that on October 26, another four-man gang that allegedly masterminded the kidnap of a Catholic ex-seminarian, Peter Chukwuemeka, was nabbed.
He said that the victim was kidnapped in front of St. Peter’s Seminary, Okigwe, and rescued by the operatives of the command two days later.
Those arrested are Emmanuel Nnadi (25) of Umulolo Okigwe, Chukwuemeka Desmond (22) of Avutu Obowo, Promise Alamanjo (24) of Umulolo Okigwe and Odii Ekwe (26) of Uburu Ohazara in Ebonyi State.
Lakanu said the suspects had made useful statements about their roles in the crime and would soon be charged to court after police investigations.
The CP also said that the command had introduced protective units for banks, filing stations and hotels where police operatives would be dispatched to ensure that crime was checked in the area.
“We chose the three areas first because these are where crimes are perpetuated in the state. I am assuring all Imo indigenes that this forthcoming Christmas celebration will be crime-free. They will sleep with their two eyes well closed. Various strategies that will guarantee the above-stated are already in place,” he added.
One of the suspects, “Mosquito,” said that he did not indulge in raping, but that he was involved in most crimes committed in the Ohaji/Egbema area.
“I don’t rape women; it is against my principle, but I was involved in major crimes in my area,” he said.
A member of the National Youth Service Corps serving in Oyo State, who gave his name as Ogbonna Godwin, said he came to collect his transcript from Federal University of Technology, Owerri before he was nabbed for armed robbery.
“I was with my friends and they said I should go somewhere with them. When we got there, it was robbery they took me to participate in. They all ran away but I was caught by the police,” he said.