Men of the Edo State Police Command have rescued five kidnap victims, including an infant and her mother.
A statement by the Command’s spokesman, Kontongs Bello, said the victims were abducted on Wednesday, 1 December, at about 8.52pm by gunmen numbering about 20, along Benin-Auchi road, by Ugha slope rubber plantation.
The victims, according to the statement were among nine persons traveling in a Galaxy Bus with Reg No. JJT 989 FC, enroute Uromi from Ibadan, Oyo State.
They were intercepted by the hoodlums and matched into the forest.
The statement said: “On receipt of the information, the DPO Ehor division, Ben Alpha swung into action, mobilized police operatives in collaboration with military and local vigilante for bush combing and rescue operation.
“In the process, five victims were rescued unhurt, four (4) male and one (1) female with a baby. Bush combing is still ongoing with the aim of rescuing the remaining four victims and further arrest the suspected kidnappers.”
In a related development, operatives of the anti-kidnapping unit of the Command in a joint Operations conducted around Era Forest in Ekpoma, Esan-West Local Government Area of the state, have arrested four suspected kidnappers.
The suspects are: Yakubu Liman, 23 years old, Mohammed Umaru (30), Ibrahim Adamu (17) and Dauda Shehu (19).
They were all arrested on 26 November, 2021, in different locations in the forest.
One of their victims who escaped from their den on 20/10/2021, (name withheld) identified Mohammed Umaru and Yakubu Liman to be part of the kidnappers who kidnapped him and two others, namely, Sunday Omojuanfo (40) and Idahosa Aigbe (45), who are yet to regain their freedom after the payment of N2.4 million ransom.
Meanwhile, operatives of the Command during a stop-and-search operation along Benin-Lagos Expressway, flagged down one black Toyota Highlander SUV with Reg. No. LSD 748 CK, driven by one Abraham Usifoh.
When search was conducted in the car, 160 rounds of live AK-47 ammunition and 100 rounds of live Baretta pistol ammunition was recovered in the car.
A statement by Bello stated that the suspect was immediately arrested and detained in Ohosu Divisional Police Headquarters for onward transfer to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID), for discreet investigation with the aim of unraveling the source of the ammunition and further arresting his accomplice(s), if any.
The Commissioner of Police, Philip Aliyu Ogbadu, has reinstated his commitment to a crime-free Edo State.
Ogbadu assured residents of the State that the Command will continue to do its best to ensure that criminals and their cohorts have no hiding place.