81 kidnap and armed robbery suspects were on Monday paraded by the Nigeria Police Force in Abuja.
The suspects included a Chadian, Nigerien and six ex-convicts who were arrested for kidnapping
Also paraded among the suspects who were arrested in Taraba, Kaduna, Kano, Sokoto and Zamfara states were suspected cyber scammers
The six ex-convicts, who were said to have formed their kidnap gang while serving terms at the Katsina Correctional Centre, were said to have abducted a Sokoto based businessman.
They were apprehended by the Intelligence Response Team and the Special Tactical Squad of the Nigeria Police Force, which also nabbed members of a kidnap gang dressed in military camouflage and Nigerian Air Force uniform.
The police gave the names of the Sokoto abductors as Rufai Muhammed, 25; Isah Abdullahi, 25; Abdulrasheed Labaran, 26; Abba Zayyanu, 22; Ayuba Awwalu, 35; and Rabiu Ibrahim, 27.
The leader of the gang, Muhammed, who through an interpreter, Muhammed said: “We became friends when we were serving jail terms in the Katsina Correctional Centre. During interaction, we got to know that we were about completing our jail terms. That was when we decided to shift from armed robbery to kidnapping. This is because we knew that we would make more money from it.”
According to him, their first target was a Sokoto-based businessman, whose family parted with millions of naira.
According to him, his gang operated on the Zaria-Kaduna-Kano Expressway 12 times, adding that they collected several millions of naira in ransom from their victims’ families.
The police revealled that the sum of N10.1m was recovered from them as well as rifles and rounds of live ammunition.
The force spokesman, DCP Frank Mba, who paraded the suspects, said members of a kidnap gang, which killed four policemen, were also nabbed, while police rifles were recovered from them.
A member of another kidnap gang, who usually dressed in military camouflage, Imuranu Ibrahim, explained that the gang had carried out six robberies on the Abuja-Kaduna Expressway.
Also speaking through an interpreter, Ibrahim said: “I am a farmer and also an armed robber. I have engaged in six robberies before I was arrested.
“We were on a robbery operation on the Abuja-Kaduna Expressway when we saw a car conveying a man, his wife, mother and their two children.
“We pulled out the woman from the vehicle and raped her in the presence of her husband, children and mother-in-law.”