A 26-year-old conductor, Chineyen Okoro, has been arrested by the Ogun State Police Command for allegedly abducting three factory workers in the Sango area of the state.
The suspect was arrested along with his roommate, 16-year-old Kalu.
PUNCH Metro learnt that the workers were returning from their workplace around 9.30pm on Tuesday when Okoro, who had a gun, and his gang members, ambushed them in the Ntabo, Ogba Ayo area and led them to an uncompleted building.
The Anambra-born suspect and his gang members, who were at large, were said to have dispossessed the workers of their valuables.
A victim, 24-year-old Ibrahim Oladeji, said he took courage and challenged Okoro after the two victims (ladies) managed to escape from the scene.
Our correspondent learnt that the Anti-Robbery Squad of the Agbado Police Division later arrived at the area and arrested Okoro.
Oladeji said, “He (Okoro) and his gang members stopped us around Ogba Ayo while we were returning from Sango. He pointed a gun at us and we were forced into an uncompleted building. They ordered us to lie down and collected our phones and wallets. I had about N15,000 in my wallet. He gave the items to one of his gang members and told him to run away.
“One of the two ladies among us managed to escape. I told the other lady, Moji, to also run. I summoned courage and challenged him. I punched him in the face and he hit me with the gun. He then fled.
“I chased him into a corner where a man, who heard me shouting ‘thief, thief’ apprehended him. The police later came to arrest him.”
Moji, 18, told PUNCH Metro that her wallet contained a sum of N1,500 and a mobile phone.
Our correspondent learnt that Okoro had claimed to be a visitor to the area and was getting fresh air when a mob descended on him.
However, he later confessed to have used the gun in self-defence when he heard people shouting thief.
He said, “I was sitting outside when I saw people rushing towards my direction and calling me a thief. I picked the gun and shot it to disperse the crowd. But I was eventually arrested and beaten up. I did not rob anybody.
“I inherited the gun from a friend six years ago after he was killed. We were both Aiye Confraternity members. I denounced the group after his death.”
The other suspect, Kalu, who hails from Imo State, denied involvement in the robbery.
He said, “Chineye(Okoro), his brother and I live in a room. Chineye went outside with a bag after we had finished cooking that evening. I don’t know whether there was a gun inside the bag or not.
“The following day after his brother had left for work, some policemen came and arrested me. I don’t know anything about the robbery.”
The Ogun State Police spokesperson, DSP Muyiwa Adejobi, said the police had launched a manhunt for the fleeing members of the gang, adding that the suspects would be transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department.
He said, “A distress call was received that armed robbers were operating in the Ntabo area, Ijoko. Consequently, Anti-Robbery patrol team from the Agbado division responded and condoned off the area after which two suspected robbers were arrested while others fled. Efforts have been intensified to arrest the fleeing gang members.”