As part of the Operation Puff Adder II recently launched by the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu, the Force Intelligence Bureau (FIB) through two of its units: the STS and the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) have smashed kidnapping, armed robbery, drug and gun running syndicates across the country.
The Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), CP Frank Mba, who disclosed this while parading 50 members of the syndicates at the STS Headquarters, Abuja recently, said the arrests were outcome of successful follow-up on cases bordering on kidnapping, armed robbery, banditry, unlawful possession of firearms, amongst others.
According to the FPRO, “The suspects have been thoroughly investigated and prima facie case has been established against them. Recovered from them include one AK47; seven locally made pistols; 1247 ammunitions, cutlasses of different shapes and sizes; house breaking implements; four cartons of tramadol; and four bags of weed suspected to be Indian Hemp.”
Mb stressed that the arrests was part of efforts by the Nigeria Police to cut off arms and ammunitions flow to kidnapper and bandits as well as the criminals
“This is because if you are able to cause weapon draught it will weaken them and make it easier for the Police and other security agencies to run them down. Apart from the systematic mopping up of arms and ammunitions we are working with other agencies across Africa and other continents to ensure these arms from entering the country.”
Speaking further, he said four of suspects: Danjuma Ajum, Marcus Danladi, Shuabu Sulieman, and Suleiman Tukur, were arrested for gunrunning.
He said the gang was monitored and tracked by intelligence operatives and arrested while transporting 1,565 live ammunition from Kaduna to Jos, Plateau state to sell to a leader of one of the bandit groups
“Incidentally, the suspects were discovered to have been plying the trade with the full consent of their family members as 231 live AK 47 were recovered from the family home when a search was executed, while another brother escaped with one AK49 riffle during the search.”
The spokesperson said efforts were on going to arrest the brother as well as the bandit leader who the ammunition was being taken to.
Fielding questions from journalists, Danladi, 36, said the ammunition was given to him by Marcus and he was taking them to one Ibrahim.
He admitted to have delivered a first batch of 700 ammunitions to Ibrahim using a Golf car, adding that he concealed them in the boot of the car and under the tyres.
Similarly, the spokesperson said one Daniel Baba from Kwali and Andrew Gbagyi was arrested for gun running.
Mba said two AK47 riffles and six locally made pistol have been recovered from Baba, even as effort were on-going arrest the manufacturers of the local pistol which is highly functional and efficient like the Brownie pistol.
“We are closing up on the manufacturers of this arm as part of conscious effort to cut off arm supplies to none state factors and other criminals,” he further stated.
In the same vein, a nine-man robbery gang made of arms dealers and those who are the end users including one Leonard 27, Benue state, who is the head dealer were paraded.
Fielding questions, Leonard admitted to have sold four pistols at 50,000 each to one Idoko Joseph, 39, who claimed to be a tailor.
Joseph, who confessed that he sold the pistols to Anthony Baye, 44; and two others identified as Junior, and Emma, who were also paraded, said he sold the them for N80,000.
The spokesperson noted that Baye, who was jailed for breaking and entering and had been in the Kano and Kaduna Prisons, was granted pardon on December 7, by the state governor but unfortunately went back to his old ways.
Baye, however, told journalists that he bought the pistol for N90,000 with money he made while in prison.