TWELVE suspected members of an armed robbery gang, some of whom are ex-prison inmates and had been carrying out series of robbery operations in Oyo State, have been arrested by the Oyo State Police Command.
Speaking with Crime Reports on September 6 during a press briefing, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Sam Adegbuyi, said the arrest was sequel to information received by his command on August 23 that a suspected armed robber, Segun Kehinde a.k.a Aperito, was seen with bullet wound at a hideout in Ibadan.
Adegbuyi said that the Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) operatives moved to the hideout where Kehinde was arrested. He added that the suspect’s confession led to the arrest of others who specialised in dispossessing riders of their motorcycles at gunpoint. He also disclosed that some of the suspects were ex-prison inmates who were previously charged to court for similar offence.
The arrested suspects include Kehinde, Yusuf Shittu, Dauda (Dare) Ahmed, Ahmed Jamiu, Khalid Kamorudeen, Umaru Ibrahim, Mohammed Rasheed, Balarabe Seidu, Umar Mohammed, Jimoh Dayo, Moses Johnson and Garuba Audu. Items recovered from the gang include two locally-made pistols, 10 live cartridges, an expended cartridge and six unregistered motorcycles.
One of the guns was recovered from Jamiu while seven live cartridges were found with Dayo, according to the police commissioner.
Crime Reports had an interview with some of the suspects. Below are excerpts of their confession:
I have been to prison before but I came out on July 11 after spending seven months. I used to carry a gang member to robbery scene. I was arrested, charged to court and remanded in prison. When I regained my freedom, I went to a friend, Adigun, to give me some money to eat because he was the one I used to sell stolen motorcycles to before I went to prison.
He replied that I should go and look for a motorcycle that I could be using to convey Dauda, Jamiu and others to operation to rob. I started collecting Dayo’s motorcycle for that purpose. What led to my arrest was that Jamiu called one Elijah and told him to go and pick me from my home. I took over the motorcycle, went to pick Jamiu and the three of us went for robbery operation at Oje. People raised the alarm when we snatched a motorcycle and I ran away, abandoning our operational bike. I was later arrested in Dayo’s house.
When I came back from prison, I joined the gang again. It was one of us, Yusuf, who asked me to take some live cartridges to Dayo. My motorcycle was among those used for robbery operation. The gang used to give me my own share after every successful operation.
Police came to arrest me where I was receiving treatment for a bullet wound I sustained in Ogbomoso. I went with my friend, Abbey, to rob in his brother-in-law’s house. He told me the in-law was selling phones and would be away to church. Unfortunately, as we entered the building, neighbours saw us and raised the alarm.
As we were escaping, I was shot in the arm. I didn’t follow the gang arrested to rob. My gang members are in Agodi prison. I was also remanded in prison for over two years but when I came out in October 2015, I decided to be selling marijuana. The operation I went for in Ogbomoso was at the prompting of my friend.
We were into snatching okada and I was arrested by policemen from Agugu Division when we went to snatch another one at Oje area of Ibadan. I went with Mohammed Rasheed and one Elijah. We have snatched about six other motorcycles. It is true a gun was found with me. I bought it from a man in Abeokuta for N15,000 about seven months ago. His name is Lala and I told him I wanted to use it for security job.
I am NURTW member; I don’t follow the gang for robbery. It was Dauda a.k.a. Cote d’Ivoire who brought a bag containing seven live cartridges to my house. The following day, I heard that they had been arrested, so I went to hide the cartridges. Unfortunately for me, Dare confessed during interrogation that the cartridges he just bought for the gun his gang was using were in my house.”