Grace Iringe-Koko, the state police command’s spokeswoman, revealed this in a statement released in Port Harcourt on Wednesday.
Iringe-Koko stated that the raid was conducted on Tuesday, May 9, 2023 by the Command’s Hawk Tactical Team as a result of reliable intelligence and that the suspects were aged between 17 and 22.
According to the statement, “while acting on reliable intelligence on the activities of some suspected kidnappers and cyber fraudsters, we raided a hideout in Cypo Estate, Umuebule 1, Etche LGA”.
Desmond Williams, 19, Isaac Patrick, 22, Prince Nelson, 17, John Ahmed, 22, ThankGod Neesogho, 22, Christian Adewale, 22, Uche Alaga, 16, and Nwika Fakae, 22, all men, were listed as the suspects by the witness.
The victim, who was 20 years old and had been tricked with a job offer (names omitted), was rescued, according to Superintendent of Police Iringe-Koko.
“The suspects in their confession revealed that their modus operandi include defrauding innocent victims online and stealing from them, as well as luring unsuspecting victims to their hideout and using them as bait to steal from their family members and loved ones,” the statement continued.
“His acquaintance used the victim as bait by promising to get him a job at the hotel.
The victim decided to return to his house when the work wasn’t forthcoming, but his captors forbade him from doing so. The victim was brutally thrashed and suffered physical injuries as punishment for his insistence. The victim’s parents were then asked for N500,000 in ransom by the suspects.
Seven laptops and various items thought to be illegal hard drugs are among the exhibits that were taken from them. The inquiry is underway.
She claimed that Okon Effiong, the state’s chief of police, had warned parents to keep an eye on their kids’ activities and to be aware of the mates they choose for them.
The state police spokeswoman said, “Residents of the state are further enjoined to remain supportive, law-abiding, and vigilant, and promptly report acts of crime and criminality to the nearest police station.”