Operatives of Ogun Police Command have smashed a kidnap syndicate made up of six members of the same family.
The syndicate, according to the police had kidnapped no fewer than eight persons in the last one year.
A statement issued by the police spokesman, Abimbola Oyeyemi said that the gang was smashed following the investigation of many kidnap cases that occurred in Sagamu in year 2020.
The statement read: ‘’In the process, one Oweniwe Okpara who claimed to hail from Delta state and three of his children namely; Samson Okpara, Bright Okpara and Eze Okpara were arrested for their roles in the kidnap of eight persons at different times in Sagamu and other areas of Ogun State.
‘’One Christian Ishaha, who harboured them in Ajaka area of Sagamu was also arrested. Further investigation revealed that three other members of the family constituting the criminal gang namely; Godwin Okpara, Godspower Okpara and Mathew Okpara are the armed squad of the syndicate, while Samson, Bright, and Eze Okpara serve as a spying unit on their target victims.
‘’One Emmanuel Joseph, a native of Ebele in Edo state was later recruited into the fold, having confronted their sister Eze Okpara to tell him the source of money they used to count every day.
‘’The syndicate subsequently opened up to Emmanuel that they are into kidnap business, who picked interest and joined them. One Okechukwu Onwubiko who was kidnapped on the 4th of June 2019 is said to be one of their victims.
‘’They also kidnapped one Omotayo Sobowale on the 16th of June 2020, while one Lamidi Akeem was abducted by them on the 20th of July 2020. On the 3rd of November 2020, the gang also kidnapped Mrs. Areoye Olufunke, and barely a week after, they abducted other victims – Mrs. Adijat Adeleye on the 11th of November 2020, and Ashaye Olayinka Tobi on 12th November 2020.
‘’Having heard about the arrest of their father and their three siblings, Godwin, Godspower and Mathew Okpara escaped to Delta state with their operational car and their arms where they were subsequently apprehended by the Delta state police command after carrying out another kidnapping there.
‘’Their camp located at a forest in Ayepe-Ijebu where their father used to farm before converting it to a camp was located by policemen led by the Divisional Police Officer for Sagamu and subsequently destroyed.
Oyeyemi, disclosed that items recovered at the camp include; three expended cartridges, cooking gas, tarpaulin, cooking utensils, women bags and twine.
He added that their arrest was made possible by the Divisional Police Officer for Sagamu Division, Okiki Agunbiade, and his men with the support of the Sagamu Security Council under Akarigbo of Remo land.