Bassey Inyang in Calabar
The Cross River State Police Command has confirmed the killing of six men suspected to be kidnappers in Ikom, Ikom Local Government Areas of the state, about 300 kilometers from Calabar, the state capital.
The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), ASP Irene Ugbo, who confirmed the killing of the suspects, said they were killed yesterday afternoon during a gun battle that ensued between them and men of the Special Anti-robber Squad (SARS) in their hideout.
Ugbo also disclosed that two members of the gang of the suspected kidnappers were also arrested as a result of the fierce gun battle with the police.
â€œOur men today had an encounter with some kidnappers in Ikom local council area while trying to rescue an abducted woman in their captivity.
â€œDuring the process of rescuing the victim, the kidnappers engaged our men in an exchange of fire, in the process, we were able to rescue the woman while five of the kidnappers were gun down.
â€œWe also arrested two of the kidnappers and our men are bringing them down to Calabar as we speak,â€™â€™ Ugbo said.
The state police spokesman said the encounter leading to their death followed an attempt by the SARS team to rescue a business woman, whose identity was not mentioned who was abducted some days ago in Ikom by the suspects and taken to their hideout in a bush in the area.
She said after the abduction of the woman, the suspected kidnappers started demanding that some amount of money be paid to them as ransom for the woman to regain her freedom.
Ugbo said the suspects were trailed to their hideout where the SARS men moved spiritedly to rescue the woman.
she said on sighting the policemen, the suspects opened gun fire, but the policemen responded with superior fire power.
Ugbo said six suspects that were felled by the police bullets.
She was, however, silent as to whether any of the policemen was hurt as a result of the gun duel.
The police spokesperson said the woman was successfully rescued from the kidnappers den, and was in good condition.
She urged members of the public with useful information to always feel free to give such information to the police in confidence.