Robbery Suspects Blame Economic Downturn for Foray into Crime


By Chiemelie Ezeobi

Six suspects belonging to three different gangs, who were arrested by operatives of the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of the Lagos State Police Command, on Sunday blamed the economic downturn for their foray into crime.

While the duo of 24-year-old Adeleke Rasaq and 22-year-old Lucky John were arrested at the Abule Egba, Agbado Oke Local Council Development Area, the second gang, comprising 26-year-old Ubuke Michael and 24-year-old Obinna Okoro, were arrested in Gbagada and the others – 25-years-old Steven Raphael and 27-year-old Samali Onafuwa – were arrested in Fagba at Station Bus Stop, Ishaga, Lagos State.

The suspects who specialise in either pickpocketing or ‘one chance’ (picking up passengers and dispossessing them of their property) were caught after a successful operation.

One of the suspects, Adeleke, who said he resigned as a factory worker to join one  – chance robbery gang, said, “We don’t make much money like before. The present economic condition in the country has greatly affected one chance business.

“We have not been able to make much money; everywhere is dry. We have not made much money since Monday. We have been sharing N20, 000, N30, 000 and N40, 000. Unlike before, when I operate alone, I could make close to N150, 000 daily.

“I teamed up with Lucky because pickpocketing is not easy in Lagos these days. When you toil alone, you might not make much. It has not been easy working independently lately. So, we have to team up to make more money to survive.

“Both of us live in Badagry and everyday, we come to Abule Egba, Agege, Fagba, Egbeda to operate. As soon as we made enough money, we would retire for the day.”

The second gang, Ubuke and his partner, Okoro, were arrested  in Gbagada after their operational bus with the registration number, FST 890 XM, had picked up two passengers who were going to Alaba International Market and Ladipo Spare Part Market to buy goods.