The Abia Police Command has arrested 10 members of a dare-devil armed theft gang that allegedly robbed a bullion van on July 26 and carted away about N390 million.
The Commissioner of Police, Janet Agbede, mentioned the suspects belonged to a 14-member gang that specialised in bullion van theft in numerous components of the nation.
She mentioned they have been arrested at completely different occasions and areas in Abia, Delta, Lagos, Ondo, Rivers and Imo.
Parading the suspects earlier than newsmen on the command’s headquarters in Umuahia on Monday, she mentioned that the arrest was made doable by “a particular intelligence, technologically-led investigation squad”.
She mentioned that the squad was arrange within the aftermath of the July assault, which occurred at Ntigha Junction on the Isialangwa axis of the Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway.
Agbede mentioned: “I fastidiously studied their modus operandi and arrange a particular intelligence, technologically-led investigation squad, with a transparent directive to arrest and recuperate weapons utilized by the lethal armed gang.
“Consequently, the squad systematically commenced operation, making use of velocity and accuracy.”
In keeping with her, the hassle of the squad led to the arrest of the suspects at completely different areas and days.
Agbede mentioned the suspects confessed to the crime “of their particular person voluntary statements.”
She additionally mentioned the suspects confessed to have robbed bullion vans in Ajah in Lagos, Akure in Ondo State, Asaba and Mbaise in Imo.
She mentioned the suspects confessed that the Abia assault was executed after they efficiently mounted about two months of surveillance on the bullion van.
The suspects included Adesoji Adeniyi, aka “Soji”, and Albert Nwachukwu, aka “White”, arrested in Lagos State.
Others have been Felix Ajalaja, Moshood Opeyemi, aka “Abiola”, and Azubuike Amaefule, aka “Zubby”, arrested in Rivers.
The remaining have been Nnamdi Nwaosu, aka “Prophet”, Monday Samuel, aka “MD”, and Matthew Christmas, aka “Aluwa”, arrested in Imo, Ondo and Delta, respectively.
Different suspects have been two brothers from Abia, Chikwendu and Prosper Israel, who have been arrested in Abia.
Prosper instructed newsmen that he joined his brother in legal actions after he was dismissed from the Division of State Companies.
Weapons recovered from the suspects included one Normal Goal Machine Gun with 53 rounds of stay ammunition, 13 AK47 rifles with 1,749 stay ammunition, two improvised explosive dynamites.
Others have been one cut-to-size double barrel gun with 5 stay cartridges and 84 AK47 magazines.
The operatives additionally impounded a Mercedes Benz truck allegedly utilized by the gang to hide their firearms.
In addition they recovered N10,184,000 from the suspects out of the N390 million allegedly stolen from the bullion van.
The state police chief mentioned that investigation was nonetheless in progress to make sure the arrest of different members of the gang nonetheless at giant.
The affected bullion van was conveying money from a financial institution in Aba to Umuahia, when it reportedly ran right into a blockade mounted by the robbers.
Police confirmed that the robbers shot and killed the financial institution’s Money Officer, whereas three of the escort policemen sustained bullet accidents.
In addition they confirmed that one of many gunmen was neutralised through the gun battle that ensued.
In the meantime, Agbede has appealed to Abia residents to proceed to help the command with helpful and well timed info to allow it take proactive steps in combating crime.
She mentioned that the command had devised methods to revive sufficient safety in Umunneochi and different components of Abia that had turn out to be infamous for kidnapping and banditry.