Police Thwart Kidnap Attempt on Expatriates in Bayelsa

By Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa
The police in Bayelsa on Sunday disclosed that men of the state command had aborted an attempt by suspected hoodlums to forcibly seize mostly foreigners living at the Expatriates Quarters, Onopa ,area of the state.
The area, occupied mostly by expatriate oil workers, was reportedly targeted by the suspected criminals because of the high net worth of the foreign residents which would have yielded large ransoms if the kidnap attempt had not been successfully repelled by the security operatives.
Members of the criminal gang, who reportedly stormed the area in several speedboats, got to the quarters at about 11.50 in the night before scaling the fence leading to the residential area.
The police did not indicate whether there were any injuries, but a statement by Mr Asinim Butswat, a Deputy Superintendent of police, indicated that the hoodlums retreated during an exchange of gunfire with the security operatives on guard duty.
Butswat, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, noted that men of the command were currently on the trail of the hoodlums, with a view to apprehending them.
 Last month, some unknown gunmen killed two soldiers in the state who were providing security for the construction firm, Setraco Nigeria, and abducted an expatriate after a shootout ensued.
The soldiers who lost their lives during the operation were providing security cover for the expatriates who were working on a road construction site. One of the foreigners, Ramzi Bau Hadir, aged 53 years, was taken away.