Almost two years after Chuks Okebata, a United States army veteran, was kidnapped and killed by gunmen in his country home known as Umuduruorie located in Mbaitoli Local Government Area of Imo State, men of the Nigeria Police Force have arrested members of the notorious kidnap gang numbering up to seven that carried out the inhuman attack.
The suspects are Sunday Igwe also known as School Boy, Michael Ahmefula, Oyebuchi Echefule, Ndubusi Isaac, Victor Dagogo, Chima Okoro and John Edet, were arrested by policemen attached to the Inspector-General of Police Intelligence Response Team.
About two AK-47 rifles and almost six magazines which were loaded with almost 127 units of live ammunition were recovered from the kidnappers at different locations in Imo,Abia and River States.
After months of trailing them it was learnt that the officers had trailed Igwe who is the ring leader of the gang to an hotel in Aba, the commercial city of Abia and arrested him.
It was disclosed that he led the team to arrest Ahamefula, his right hand man, and Echefule in a hotel in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
From the information gathered other suspects were subsequently arrested in Orlu and Aba areas of Imo and Abia states.
In an exclusive interview with the popular media platform known as City Round during the week, the gang leader disclosed that he killed the US soldier because he was acting stubborn.
He stated that the late US soldier was forced inside the boot of their car after kidnapping him while heading for their hideout.
“We didn’t know who he was when he kidnapped him. While we were heading for our camp, he pulled out his gun and started shooting at us from the boot. We didn’t know he had a pistol on him.
“Bullets hit me in the leg and the driver was shot in the hand. We drove to a halt and disarmed him.
“We killed him because he proved stubborn. We dumped his body inside a gutter and left. We didn’t have the intention of killing him but he forced us to do so.”
The 29-year-old native of Abia State explained that he went into crime after he dropped out of school in 2009 and relocated to Port Harcourt.
He said he met with some men at a smoking joint, who introduced him to carjacking.
He said, “After some time, I met one Mazi and KC, who introduced me to kidnapping. Mazi wanted a place where he would be keeping his kidnapped victims. I provided my family house in the village and I was looking after the victims after they had been kidnapped.
“Later on, some operatives busted our hideout. I escaped with a gunshot wound in the hand.
“When I returned from the hospital after eight months, I reunited with KC. Our first operation was in Imo State. We moved round the city looking for people with flashy cars. When we see one, we will follow and kidnap the owner.
“There was this man we followed unknown to us that policemen were in his car. The moment the policemen came down, we opened fire on them and killed them. We collected their rifles and kidnapped the man. We didn’t know that the man we kidnapped was just a driver and not the owner of the vehicle.”
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