• Fake soldier, accomplice nabbed for rape
Wale Oyewale, Ibadan
The Oyo State Police Command, on Thursday, paraded two suspects in connection with a robbery in the Amama area of Ogbomoso.
The robbery was said to have been carried out on February 29, 2020, around 11.30pm.
Briefing journalists on arrests made by the personnel of the command since the beginning of the year, the Commissioner of Police, Olushina Olukolu, said Ismaila Salami, 26, and Femi Ojelola, 33, were arrested in Ogbomoso after a gun duel with policemen.
According to the CP, they were apprehended following a distress call received by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Dugbe, Ibadan.
“The hoodlums, having successfully gained access to the Omilana family, launched an attack on the household and dispossessed the owner of the house of his Toyota Camry car, phones and the sum of N2.1m at gunpoint,” Olukolu stated.
He said the hoodlums engaged his men in a shootout and in the process, Salami and Ojelola were arrested, while a member of the gang, Olanrewaju Adeshina, sustained bullet wounds and was rushed to the Ladoke Akintola University Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso, where he later died.
Salami confessed to the crime saying, “We were coming from Omilana’s shop to pick up our gang members from his house, because the man could not give us the amount that we demanded from him unless we followed him to the shop. We agreed and left two of our members in his house.
“We had already collected the money when the SARS operatives intercepted us and one of us, the late Adeshina, opened fire on them. He was shot in the process. Three of our gang members escaped, but Femi (Ojelola) and I were arrested.”
Men of the command have also arrested a 21-year-old man, Sodiq Abiodun, and his 31-year-old accomplice, Lekan Adesokan, for rape and impersonation.
Abiodun, who claimed to be a soldier, was alleged to have raped a 17-year-old girl.
Forty-three other suspects were apprehended for robbery, murder, cultism, animal rustling, impersonation and other offences in different parts of the state.
The CP said the arrests were aided by intelligence gathering and the support of the state government.
According to him, around 8.30am on Wednesday, February 19, the rape victim was accosted at a desolate spot in Modina, Orita Aperin area, Ibadan, by Abiodun, who claimed to be a soldier.
He said, “The hoodlum attacked the teenager and dispossessed her of her mobile phone and abducted her to a hideout in Papa Eleye in the Olomi area of the city, where his accomplices were waiting for him. The victim was held hostage and was serially raped until the following day.
“As soon as the incident was reported at the Special Anti-Robbery Squad office, a team of SARS operatives swung into action and two of the hoodlums, who later identified themselves as Sodiq Abiodun and Lekan Adesokan, were arrested in connection with the crime.”
“A set of Nigerian Army camouflage uniform was recovered from the suspects. Police investigation showed that Abiodun usually wore the army uniform anytime he wanted to go for operation.”
Abiodun, a father of one, said his ambition was to join the Nigerian Army, but fate did not smile on him.
The suspect, who is a carpenter, said he took to impersonation for survival because of hardship.
He stated, “I am a carpenter but people know me in my area as a soldier. I love the profession. Since 2007, I have been applying to join the Nigerian Army, but I couldn’t make it. For one reason or the other, they usually disqualify me. I love the job, so I got an army uniform and started wearing it around. I travelled around with the uniform. People give me money because they know me as a soldier.
“This is the first time that I will be involved in rape. I wooed the girl and took her to my friend’s house. The act was committed in the process.”
His accomplice, Adesokan, said, “I knew Abiodun as a soldier in the community where I live. Many people thought he is a soldier. He was loved and respected. He was always travelling; he would travel for a long time and people would believe that he went on official assignments.
“He brought the girl to my house.”
Also arrested was a gang of robbers, who allegedly specialised in snatching commercial motorcycles at the Iyana Church area of Ibadan.
The suspects, Dauda Jamiu, Kazeem Lekan and Biodun Fasola, reportedly attacked and dispossessed one Kolawole Gboyega of his motorcycle at Iyana Church on December 6, 2019.
The suspects were later arrested by a team of SARS operatives.
The police are also on the trail of a gang of kidnappers, who reportedly abducted a 46-year-old woman, Abimbola Oyebamiji, from her poultry farm around 4pm on Tuesday.
The hoodlums were said to have demanded N60m ransom, but later reduced it to N10m when Oyebamiji’s family members were unable to pay.
The victim was said to have been rescued by the police without the payment of ransom, but her captors reportedly fled.