Operatives of Anambra State Police command have arrested the leader of a notorious criminal gang which specializes in robbing commuters along Ufuma – Oko – Uga- Amaokpala road in Orumba North and Aguata Local Government Areas of the state.
Spokesperson of the command, DSP Ikenga Toochukwu, who disclosed this in a press release, said the gang leader, Okechukwu Okpo and his members were allegedly responsible for over twenty-five cases of armed robbery, kidnapping, and car-snatching incidents in the area.
The PPRO said the suspect confessed to being a member of the gang that recently robbed a hotel in Ndikelionwu, where a female staff was raped.
“Police Operatives attached to Oko divisional headquarters acting on credible information in the early hours of 6/9/2022 burst a criminal hideout, an uncompleted building along Oko – Ufuma expressway in Orumba North LGA,” the statement read.
“Operatives arrested one Okechukwu Okpo ‘M’ age 24 years of Ndobasi village, Ebonyi State. One locally fabricated pistol, two live cartridges, and three plasma television were recovered.
The criminal gang on sighting the police vehicle opened fire on the operatives, who responded swiftly, engaging the armed robbers in a gun battle. While other gang members fled the scene, Okechukwu was arrested.
“Preliminary investigations show that the gang was responsible for over 25 armed robbery, kidnapping, and car-snatching incidents that have happened along Oko Ufuma, Uga, Amaokpala expressway, among others.
“The most recent according to the confessional statement of the suspect (Okechukwu) is an attack in a hotel on 13/8/2022 at Ndikelionwu, where a female staff was raped and the gang also made away with three television and other items. Efforts are ongoing to arrest other fleeing gang members.” he added.
The PPRO also stated that four other suspected criminals have been arrested in a separate incident.
He said the suspects were arrested in conjunction with local security, and they include; one Chukwubike Anieto ‘m’ Aged 20years from Agulu, Chukwuemerie Ike ‘m’ aged 36years from Agulu, Chidera muo ‘m’ aged 25years from Neni and Chukwuma Israel ‘m’ aged 28 years all residing at Umuezeani village Akwaeze.
“We recovered one berretta pistol, three motorcycles, one axe, three machetes, one police belt, one Sumec generator, thirteen different brands of phones, and other incriminating items.
“Interrogation by the police operatives revealed that the gang attacked a police Constable, and dispossessed him of his personal belonging on 29/8/2022 along Umukabia Okofia village, Neni. Also most recently, the gang were caught in the act on 9/9/2022 in an attempt to rob a lady of her belonging along Okofia village, Neni.”he added.