Kwara’s Harvest of Criminals

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The desire of the Kwara State Police Command to bring a new lease of life to residents of the state recently got a boost with the mass arrest of criminals, writes Hammed Shittu

Stakeholders in the security management have identified community policing as a major strategy that can be used by state police formations in the country to address the high wave of crimes in the society. This is so as the people remain a major tool to get information about the day to day activities of their friends, well wishers among others and thereby providing necessary information to the police if otherwise the residents embarked on any crime activities within such community that they are policing. In doing that, they would be able to assist the security agencies especially the police command in tackling the high rate of crimes in the society.

No wonder, this is the strategy that was recently used by the Kwara State Police Command under the leadership of Alhaji Lawan Ado at arresting the criminals that have been terrorising the residents of the state in the past few months. The community policing strategy couple with the technical intelligence gathering among the rank and file of the state police command has manifested in the success recorded during the period under review.

This community policing policy of the state police command has afforded the state police command to get in touch with the residents on crime management and the development has brought a new lease of life to the residents of the state in the war against crime in the state.

However, the state Police Commissioner, Ado while speaking with journalists in Ilorin recently on the new breakthrough on crime management said that, the achievement recorded by the command was as a result of effective community policing in the state which has made the people to volunteer vital information that led to the arrest of the suspected criminals that cut across armed robbers and kidnappers in the state.

Parading the suspected criminals in the state, Ado said that, the state police command has arrested a gang of kidnapers and cattle rustlers who went away from Kwara State with over 200 cows.

He said that, they were arrested in Niger State where they had escaped to.

Ado explained that the police from the Niger State Command were able to arrest the suspects after his command shared with the Mokwa Police Station in Niger State, an intelligence about the movement of the suspects.

He said that in the process of arresting the suspects, a police corporal, Machi Yusuf who is an operative of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), unfortunately lost his life.

Ado said that the policeman died in an exchange of gunfire with the kingpin of the kidnap gang, Adamu Abacha.

He said Abacha, after the clash, escaped to the bush and that while the SARS operatives were combing the bush for him, they found his dead body on the ground and also recovered from there, his AK 47 rifle he buried in the ground.

The police commissioner said 233 cows were recovered from the gang and that six live ammunitions were retrieved alongside the rifle recovered from their dead boss.

He said six of the gang members who were arrested would be charged to court as soon as investigation is concluded.

The police boss also disclosed that two people among four suspected to have kidnapped a man, Hassan Taiye, in his mosque in Chikanda in Baruten Local Government Area of the state had been arrested.

He said four men two of whom were in Army uniform kidnapped the victim and took him to an unknown destination after injuring his vigilante guard with a gunshot.

Ado further disclosed the recovery of 10 motorcycles from a gang of armed robbers specialising in theft of motorcycles in Ilorin.

The police boss who said his men arrested two members of the gang after a pastor in the town reported the theft of his Bajaj motorcycle disclosed that efforts were on to arrest the escaping members of the gang.

Ado stated further that, the men of the state criminal investigation bureau of the state police command also arrested three suspects out of five armed men that allegedly invaded the house of one Alhaji Abdulkadir Ibrahim at Boburu compound in Lafiaji town in Edu local government council of the state.

Ado said that, during the operation, a sum of N65,000, one Airtel phone worth N3,500 were carted away from the house while injuries were also inflicted on the family.

He said that, “after the arrest of the affected suspects through the technical intelligence gathering by men of the state CID, the suspects confessed of allegedly invading the house of Alhaji Ibrahim and exhibits recovered from the suspects include one Dell Laptop, one Techno phone and the affected suspects would soon be charged to court for prosecution.”

The state police commissioner also disclosed that, two out of three suspected armed robbers that specialised in the car snatching in Ilorin, the state capital were arrested during the period.

He explained that, the suspected armed robbers invaded the house of one Mr. Tebi Alawiye at Coca-Cola area, Ilorin while coming from work and accosted the man in his house and asked him to come down with his wife and matched them into their house and took away the Toyota Corolla car with registration number Lagos MUS 537 DB valued at N3.5m.

He said that,” When the report was made, the SARS swung into action and traced the car which had a car tracking device installed in it to Specialist Hospital, Sobi, Ilorin where the car was already being prepared for dismantling and investigation led to the arrest of the two suspected armed bandits.”

Ado who said that, the state police command has commenced manhunts for the arrest of the remaining suspects in connection with the act added that, the two suspected armed bandits would be arraigned in court.

The state police boss also said that, seven out of 20 suspected armed bandits that had invaded Nuhu Village via Kaima in Kaima local government council of the state were arrested.

According to him, “On 22/1/2018 at about 0700hours, some hoodlums numbering about 20 armed with guns and other dangerous weapons invaded Nuhu Village via Kaima, they attacked and robbed one Ganiyu Orelope and Isiaka Orelope of the following items: six assorted telephones handset, some clothes, some pots, soup ingredients, cash of N152,000 and a bag containing three drivers’ license, three vigilante identify cards and one national identify card.

“After the robbery operation, the hoodlums escaped into the forest linking Niger State and Benin Republic while in pursuit of the armed bandits, three vigilante members died through gun shots from the hoodlums.

“Investigation by the SARS and local vigilante led to the arrest of seven out of the 20 suspected armed bandits and they would be arraigned in court.”

He also stated further that, five suspects that have invaded one soap making factory in Ilorin were arrested during the month under review.

He said that, “Based on the directive of my office through a petition assigned to SARS on the complaints of one Mr. Taiwo Yusuf Adebayo of No 33 Sade compound behind New Market Oja Tuntun, Ilorin that at his soap making factory, five armed robbers invaded the company and robbed him and his workers of the following: N50,000 cash, nine assorted telephone, Plasma Tv valued at N75,000 and one Toyota Corolla with Registration number Lagos JJJ 621 AM valued at N1.6m.

“On the strength of the complaints, the SARS swung into action and an investigation led to the recovery of the stolen car through one Qudus Olakunle Alaya and effort is still on to arrest the other fleeing gang members.”

However, the state police boss called on the residents of the state to be security conscious stating that, they should be up and doing at releasing information that would be leading to the hideout of the armed bandits or any suspected criminals in the state.

He said that, the residents should also try to install car tracking devices on their cars so as to guard against car stealing in the state.

Without mincing words, with the superlative success recorded by the state police command in the state that led to the harvest of arrests of over 45 suspected criminals that have been terrorising the people of the state in the past few months, the war against crime prevention through community participation remains a great feat that should be maintained by the state police command so as to bring continued peace to the State of Harmony where residents would be living with their two eyes closed in the night without any fear of attack.