Three robbers identified as Umar Useni (46) Atim Abukakar (31) and Abdulrazak Hassan (35) who attacked the Publisher of Vanguard Newspapers, Sam Amuka-Pemu, in the Anthony Village area of Lagos State, have confessed how they got inside information from one of the publisher’s security guards.
The criminal gang who are nationals of Republic of Chad, invaded the publisher’s residence at about 1:00am on Sunday, June 5, 2016, and reportedly carted away valuables, phones and money (local and foreign currencies), as well as injuring 81-year-old Amuka-Pemu, before escaping in a car they brought for the operation.
According to reports, the police thereafter arrested Amuka-Pemu’s two security guards, identified only as Jude and Francis, after which members of the robbery gang were apprehended.
While being paraded on Thursday at the Lagos state command headquarters, Ikeja, Useni, who spoke in pidgin English: “I am from Gamboru Ngala Local Government Area of Borno State. I am not from Chad. I have been living in Satellite Town since 2011. I have worked as a gardener in a school around that area before I met Gambo, our leader.
“Two security men in Baba’s (Amuka) compound brought the information to Gambo. They told Gambo to come with his boys on a Saturday, that Baba brought some money home. One of the guards is an Ibo man, while the other is Hausa. Gambo knows their names, but I don’t.
“On the day we attacked, I met Gambo at Apple Junction, after a telephone conversation, from where we headed to Anthony Village.
“I did not beat Baba. He fell down while he was running. When I saw blood on him, I begged my colleagues not to harm him because he is an old man. Besides, Baba threw an envelope at me when we asked him to give us the money. In it was N300,000.
“After the operation, we drove to a hotel where we shared the money. The security men that brought the business got N30,000 each. Gambo took the money to them on Sunday evening and they told us to go into hiding that policemen were around.”
Another suspect said a security guard at the publisher’s house opened the gate for them, adding that the guard did not reveal his identity.
“There were two security men at the house; one was Igbo and the other Hausa. One of the guards called Gambo, our informant, to tell him about the operation. Gambo, who lived in the FESTAC Town area, informed Muhammed.
“We were four that went to the house and Muhammed invited us. The unknown guard opened the gate through which we all entered. We saw N200,000 in the man’s wardrobe and took it.
“I am from Chad, but I have been staying in Lagos State since 2001. I live in the Satellite Town area, where I work in a private school as a gardener. After leaving the man’s house, we went to a nearby hotel, where we shared the money inside our car,” he said.
Abubakar added that he packed some pound notes from the publisher’s wardrobe and N100,000 cash, saying they met Amuka-Pemu sleeping.
“I stay in Sango Ota, Ogun State. I was called by Muhammed that there was a job he would want me to participate in. I was asked to go to the Anthony Village area. When I got there, a car was waiting and we drove into the close where the man lives; we met him sleeping.
“When I opened his wardrobe, I found newspapers and some pound notes. I quickly packed the pounds. I searched again and found N100,000 and took it. That was all I made from the robbery.
“We did not intend to beat the publisher. When he saw us, he was frightened and he tried to run during which he fell and hurt his finger. I had not worked with Muhammed before that day. When we came in, we tied the two security guards at the gate and escaped in our car after the operation,” he said.
Lagos state Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, who paraded the suspects, said a Mitsubishi salon car, one sledgehammer and an iron cutter were recovered from them, adding that the police were closing in on the fleeing gang member.
“Operatives are still interrogating the three of them to be able to arrest the last member of the gang. They have confessed to the crime, and the vehicle which they used for the robbery has been recovered.
“One sledgehammer and an iron cutter were also recovered from them. The three of them are from the Republic of Chad. They are cross-country criminals and at the end of investigation, they will be charged to court.”