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Rivers: Arrested gang leaders’ exhibits allegedly not displayed by Army

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Photos of the suspected leaders of gangsters arrested from their hideouts by the army in Rivers State were reportedly shared but their exhibits, which Nigerian security and military agencies usually publicise, were not included.

TIMELY POST also gathered that four of the gang leaders have been “terrorising” some communities in the state.

The media coordinator for army operations, Aminu Iliyasu, who just left as the spokesperson for Army 6 Division in Port Harcourt said the operations leading to the arrests were carried out simultaneously and that all the targets were involved in kidnappings.

“Troops on Operation MESA raided the criminal hide-outs of some identified kidnap kingpins in Rivers State,” said Mr Iliyasu, a Colonel, in his statement. “The suspected kidnappers who have been terrorising innocent citizens met their waterloo when troops of 29 Battalion simultaneously raided their criminal hideouts in Obio/Akpor, Tai and Gokana LGAs of Rivers State on 2nd October 2019.”

He added: “The raid led to the arrest of 4 high profile criminals who have been on the Security Agencies’ wanted list. Those arrested include Dumbari Bro from B-Dere, Victor Dokara from K-Dere, Gbaraco Kaviloba from Lewe, and Confidence Friday from Bodo community.”

All the four communities where the suspects are reportedly from are parts of Ogoniland in Gokana Local Government Area of Rivers State.

Residents in the oil-rich state commonly express fears about activities of cultists and gangs, most of them young persons. They sometimes engage in gun battles and kidnap people, including travellers for ransom.

Many of them also engage in violence during elections.

Meanwhile, the four kingpins arrested by the army would “soon” be handed over to the “appropriate security agency for prosecution” after military investigation, said Mr Iliyasu.

Meanwhile, in the North-east, Mr Iliysau said troops of the Operation Lafiya Dole helped three civilians with a lorry of goods escape kidnap planned by Boko Haram terrorists.

“In continuation of the Nigerian Army’s drive to clear marauding criminal insurgents and other unscrupulous elements from Operation LAFIYA DOLE and other theatres of operations nationwide, troops of 151 Battalion in conjunction with elements of 21 Special Armoured Brigade’s Quick Response Force (QRF) thwarted the kidnap of 3 civilians by the criminal insurgents,” said Iliyasu.

He further said, “This rescue operation occurred at about 12:20 pm on 4 October 2019 when the said troops, while acting on information volunteered by some patriotic indigenes, blocked and engaged the criminal insurgents in a fierce fire fight at a crossing point around FIRGI village in BAMA LGA of Borno State, leading to the rescue of the civilians and a Canter truck loaded with grains.

“The criminal insurgents, who succumbed to the superior fire power of the troops, abandoned the hijacked truck and its occupants and fled in disarray into the forest.

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Metro/Crime

Abuja gunmen kill father, abduct his two children

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Gunmen suspected to be kidnappers have killed a man identified as Ayuba Chashe, and abducted his two children at Yebu community in Kwali Area Council of FCT.

The Chairman of Kwali Area Council, Mr Danladi Chiya, confirmed the development to NAN on Tuesday.

Chiya said that the incident happened at midnight on Monday when the gunmen attacked the community.

The chairman condemned the attack on Yebu community that led to the death of the man and the abduction of his two children.

He assured the residents in the area that everything possible would be done to get the perpetrators to book and the children released from captivity safely.

He commiserated with the affected family and assured that there was collaboration between security agencies to make sure that the kidnappers are apprehended.

Chiya, therefore, urged the community to cooperate with security agencies and report any suspicious movement to curb the menace in the area.

Meanwhile, efforts to reach the F.C.T Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Anjuguri Manza, proved abortive.

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Metro/Crime

Court convicts two for N7m fraud in Benue state

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Makurdi Zonal Office, Tuesday secured the conviction of Osikoya Kolawole Gboyega and Adewuyi Ademola Adebayo for Automated Teller Machine fraud.

The duo appeared before Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon of the Federal High Court, Makurdi, capital of the state.

But the EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren in a statement to TIMELY POST affirmed that the convicts pleaded guilty to two counts following a plea bargain agreement.

On this basis, the prosecuting counsel, G. G. Chia-Yakua, urged the Court to accept the plea bargain agreement and convict them accordingly.

In his ruling, Justice Olajuwon pronounced them guilty and subsequently convicted and sentenced them to two years imprisonment with option of fine of N100,000 each on count one; two years imprisonment with option of fine of N100,000 each on count two, both to run concurrently.

The presiding Justice also ordered that the sum of N300,000 that they had refunded in the course of investigation be paid to the complainant as restitution.

However, TIMELY POST learnt that trouble started for Kolawole and Adebayo when they were arrested by operatives of the Commission on September 9 and 10, in Lagos State in relation to a case of fraud, aiding and abetting.

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Metro/Crime

Man arraigned for alleged N46m fraud

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Lagos office, Monday arraigned Ola Lawal alongside his firm, DCAN Oil and Gas Limited over alleged N46 million money laundering and stealing.

Lawal was made to appear before Justice Chuka Austine Obiozor of the Federal High Court, Ikoyi in Lagos State.

TIMELY POST gathered it was an offence contrary to Section 15(2)(b) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 as amended and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.

The anti-graft spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren disclosed this in a statement in Abuja.

One of the charges reads: “That you Ola Lawal (a.k.a Lawal Roland) and DCAN Oil and Gas Limited on or about 24th June, 2019 in Lagos within the Jurisdiction of this Honourable Court fraudulently transferred the sum of N46, 000, 000.00 (Forty-Six Million Naira) from Flour Mills of Nigeria Plc Account Number 1002792889 domiciled in United Bank for Africa Plc to DCAN Oil and Gas Limited Account Number 0036695765 domiciled in Union Bank Plc which you ought to have known that such fund forms part of the proceeds of an unlawful act.”

But the defendant reportedly pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to him.

It was on this ground that prosecution counsel, Muhammad Hussain asked the court for a trial date and order the remand of the defendant in Correctional Service custody.

But the defence counsel, Godwin Dick informed the court of a bail application already before the court and which has been served on the prosecution.

In his ruling, Justice Obiozor adjourned the case to October 15, for hearing of bail application and commencement of trial.

The Presiding Justice also ordered that the defendant be remanded in the EFCC custody.

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