Senator Iroegbu in Abuja
The police have arrested 56 suspected militias, bandits and cattle rustlers alleged to have been responsible for the killings in Birnin Gwari, Kaduna and Zamfara States.
The Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Jimoh Moshood, said the success was in compliance with the directive of the Inspector General of Police (IG), Ibrahim Idris, to fish out those behind the recent killings in parts of North-west .
Moshood said Idris had during the visit to Kaduna State, approved the creation of one Police Area Command and two new divisional headquarters.
The police boss, he stated, also ordered the immediate deployment of additional 200 personnel and 10 patrol vehicles to beef-up security in Birnin Gwari, Kaduna State to other villages and towns in Zamfara State to flush out the bandits.
â€œThis operation which is still ongoing has been yielding positive results and culminated in the arrest of the above mention vicious bandits and militias terrorising the areas from Birnin Gwari, Kaduna State to other villages and towns in Zamfara State,â€ he said.
Moshood grouped the suspects into five gangs who he said, were responsible for armed robberies, cattle rustling and dealing in firearms in the areas of operations.
He said the first gang was led by Mohammed Rabiu, who was arrested after four members of his group were killed by the Police Joint Team in a shootout in the forest at Bawan Daji, Anka LGA in Zamfara State.
One 45-year-old Ardo Aliyu is the principal suspect.
According to the police spokesman, Rabiu â€œconfessed to have been responsible for the killing of 46 people during the burial of three people that his gang killed earlier in Bawan Daji village in Zamfara Stateâ€.
He said seven AK47 rifles were recovered from his gang and that he will be charged to court on completion of investigation.
The second gang, he said, comprises the 35-year-old gang leader, Abdullahi Abubakar, Halidu Musa, 34, principal suspect, Mohammed Ruwa, 30, principal suspect, Mohammed Sani, 30, principal suspect and Dahiru Yahaya, 38, principal suspect, among others.
Moshood said these set of criminals are dealers in prohibited firearms and ammunition.
â€œSelling arms and ammunition to the armed bandits and militia gangs operating in Birnin Gwari to Zamfara State. They admitted and confessed to the Police investigation team to have sold over Five AK47 rifles to the armed bandits killing innocent people in the villages in Birnin Gwari, Kaduna State to Zamfara State. 20 locally-made AK47 rifles were recovered from them,â€ he stated.
Moshood said the third gang led by Ibrahim Musa a.k.a Zage has been on the wanted list of the police in Zamfara, Niger, Kogi and FCT for several kidnappings, armed robbery and Rape of their victims for some time now.
He said Musa recently kidnapped a businessman and collected ransom of N10 million after robbing the same victim of N7 million from the victimâ€™s car.
The fourth gang comprises Lucky John, 29, Danjuma Biko, 32, and 25 other suspects.
Moshood listed the fifth gang to include 32-year-old John Orkar as the leader, while 29-year-old Monday Okon as principal suspect and 12 other suspects.