Men of the Ondo State Security Network codename Amotekun have arrested nine suspected kidnappers when they wanted to collect ransom from the members of the Corps who disguised as family members of the victim.
The suspects led by Musa Abdullahi were arrested in Akunnu-Akoko in the Akoko Northwest local government area of the state after they kidnapped Mr Bello Audu from his house in the community and took him to the forest.
The Commandant of the Corps, Chief Adetunji Adeleye said Audu was kidnapped from his house around 7.30 pm when observing Muslim prayer. He was with his abductors for five days where he was fed with dry cassava flakes (garri).
Parading the suspects, Adeleye said three of the suspects were arrested when the men of the Corps pretended as the family of the victims that wanted to pay ransom to secure the release of the victim in their custody. He said the three suspects were arrested and it led to the arrest of six other members of the gang.
Narrating his experience in the den of his abductors, Bello, a farmer, said he was observing the 7:00 pm Muslim prayer at his residence in Akunnu-Akoko when about six armed men suddenly came and flogged him with a stick and ordered him to follow them to the forest.
He said he was fed with a small quantity of garri flakes without water for five days before he was rescued by Amotekun Corps.
Bello, who is from Olorun, Kwara State, said: “I was in my house observing the 7:00 pm prayer as a Muslim when suddenly some men numbering about six walked up to me on the mat and flogged me with a stick.
“Some of them were carrying guns and they asked me to follow them.
They later contacted my family asking for ransom so that they could release me from their hideout.
“While in their hideout for five days, they offered me small garri to eat. They didn’t give me water throughout. Though I didn’t see them eat. I was later rescued from them by men of the Amotekun Corps when they wanted to collect the ransom brought for them for my release. They were all arrested there by Amotekun Corps.”
Aside from the suspected kidnappers, Adeleye said some suspected criminals were arrested for stealing cable and wires at Ode-Irele in Irele Local Government Area and other different locations during the raid across the 18 local government areas of the state in the last week by Amotekun Corps.
Abdullahi, the leader of the kidnappers said his father was killed by armed robbers, which resulted in kidnapping because it was his destiny to engage in criminal activities.
Similarly, a 16-year-old boy, who was arrested for illegal possession of firearms when he was 13 and sent to juvenile home, was also arrested for burglary and stealing.
The suspect said he has broken into more than 40 shops since he left the juvenile home. He claimed to be overwhelmed by evil spirit that motivates him to steal.
During the raid, a six-man syndicate that deals in stealing and buying stolen goats was arrested with two taxi cabs loaded with goats.
The suspects, among who was a woman, claimed that they didn’t steal the goats despite their inability to explain how they came about the goats.
Some other suspects were arrested for snatching and stealing motorbikes from unsuspecting owners in different towns in the state.
They usually take the bikes to neighbouring states to sell to their receivers.
The Amotekun Corps Commander disclosed that in collaboration with other security agencies in the state, they are embarking on flushing criminals out of the forests in the state.
His words “We have discovered that kidnappers have left towns and taken refuge in the forests. So, in collaboration with other security agencies in the state, we are embarking on flushing our forests of unscrupulous elements who kidnap people on the roadside and flee back into the forest.
“Criminals must leave our state and allow people going about their legitimate businesses to have peace of mind.”
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