Police operatives in Lagos have arrested a 40-year-old woman, Chinyere Okechukwu, for allegedly stealing and selling a five-month-old baby for N900, 000 to a childless couple in the state.
The spokesman of the state police command, Muyiwa Adejobi, who confirmed the development in a statement on Tuesday, said the suspect stole the child from her mother in Anambra State, and sold to the couple, Paul and Happiness Ibebuilo, in Lagos.
Adejobi said preliminary investigations revealed that the woman operates a child trafficking syndicate with one Chiano with whom she arranged to marry the 20-year-old mother of the child, Onyechukwu Okafor, early in March.
He said: “After Okechukwu had paid the N50,000 bride price of the single mother, she also paid an extra N50,000 as money spent on hospital bills during the birth of the child.
“Okechukwu later travelled with the mother of the child to Lagos and sold the child to the Ibebuilos.”
The state’s Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, who paraded the suspects at the command headquarters on Monday, said the three suspects had been arrested and the case file transferred to the Gender Unit of the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) for discreet investigation.
He said: “One Onyechukwu Okafor, 20, reported to the police at Satellite Division that her son, one Chimuanya Okafor, five-months-old, was forcefully taken away by one Chinyere Okechukwu, 40, of No 24, Muyiwa Opalyeye Street, Surulere and sold him for N900,000 to one Happiness Ibebuilo, of Iyana Oba Lagos.
“Police swung into action and moved to the house of one Ibebuilo Paul, 45, in whose custody the stolen child was recovered. The suspects were eventually arrested by the police.”
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