In News by Oluwaseun Samuel on the 15th, August, 2020

Unbelievable Story Of Nigerian Household Whose Members Together with Father And Mom Are All Concerned In Kidnapping

Unbelievable Tale Of Nigerian Family Whose Members Including Father And Mother Are All Involved In Kidnapping

kidnapping family

The household

The story of Fabian Obioha, 60, and his household, from Ogamma Awara Ohaji in Egbema native authorities space of Imo State reads like that of Pablo Escobar, the ruthless Colombian drug lord of the infamous Medellin cocaine cartel whose whole household – spouse, son and daughter – have been stated to be concerned within the illicit drug commerce till the lengthy arm of the legislation caught up with them.

In Obioha’s case, it’s not drug however kidnapping that’s the supply of their inspiration. Himself, his spouse, sons, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, simply title it, are all united by this legal enterprise.  In truth, by no means within the historical past of kidnapping both in Nigeria or within the wider world has an entire household been so deeply concerned and so united by one legal commerce!  From the letter “M” standing for the person, the patriarch of the household, to the letter  “I” standing for his in-laws, kidnapping appears to be one opium from which an extended line of his offspring and descendants had refused to be weaned, it doesn’t matter what legislation enforcement and anti-crime technique that was utilized to make them do so.

Kidnapping runs of their blood

However like in all legal instances, no matter has a starting all the time ends up having an finish. For Obioha’s household, the start of the top began for his or her legal profession when his first son, David, was arrested, charged to courtroom, tried and sentenced to jail. In the intervening time, he’s serving out his time period on the Kirikiri Correctional Centre in Lagos.

Not lengthy after his incarceration, his speedy youthful brother, 28, picked up the gauntlet. Having realized pretty effectively from David, the rope of kidnapping, the intrigues and intricacies concerned, and armed with subtle weapons, arms and ammunition, a little bit of luck, charms and prayers, Ebenezer and his gang went into it headlong.  Of their outings, they terrorized residents of Imo, Abia, Rivers, Ebonyi, Anambra and Enugu states at will and with uncanny impunity. Details unearthed by police investigations to this point about their legal actions are stated to be mind-boggling.

The organised gang

Revelations from the police present that the gang is well-organised. Whereas Ebenezer and members of his gang roamed the streets searching for whom to kidnap and ask for big sum of ransom from, thereafter, his father, Fabian, and mom, Happiness, served as their armourers, who stored their weapons infrequently, to stave off suspicion and prying eyes. The association was such that their weapons for operations have been by no means stored in a single place or in a single basket on the similar time. Their calculation was that if a few of them have been confiscated at any given time, they might nonetheless have some left with which to proceed their operations till they are again into form, arms and ammunition-wise, someway.

Fabian’s youthful son, Victor, 18, served as their most trusted and dutiful courier who helped to move the arms and ammunition from one place to a different, with out elevating eyebrows. Ogechi, Ebenezer’s spouse served as their accountant and cashier who collected, stored and distributed the ransom money, in keeping with directives given to her. Kennedy Okwuonu, their son-in-law, offered the gang with arduous drug as effectively as different logistics.

In addition to these are different characters who performed one or two roles to grease the wheel of the legal enterprise and stored it going. They embrace Pastor Caleb Agu, stated to be the “religious director” of the gang. He offered them with prayers, luck charms and “bullet proof” that make it tough for bullets to penetrate their our bodies each time they have been shot at by the police or different legislation enforcement brokers, throughout a shootout. One of the suspects who merely recognized himself as Ikechukwu Njoku and “a protocol officer” to Pastor Agu stated he used his motorcycle to convey victims to pickup factors whereas one other suspect, Chief Andrew Okweregbuwa offered his ash colored RX300 Jeep for all of the operations.

Police raid that ended their profession

However they have been all rounded up lately when a safety operation led by Linus Nwaiwu (Superintendent of Police) and Commander of Imo State’s Anti-Kidnapping Squad burst the kidnap gang’s actions. The Igbo say that what a fowl sang whereas it was on the market within the air having fun with its freedom will not be what it’s going to sing when it’s caged in captivity. So, it is with Ebenezer and his gang. Now in police custody, following the raid and arrest, and underneath investigations, they’ve all started to sing like canary, to elucidate how culpable or in any other case they’re within the issues they are being accused of.

The Imo State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Isaac Akinmoyede advised Saturday Solar that Ebenezer and his gang members kidnapped over 40 victims within the course of their legal profession stated to have spanned about two years. A few of their victims embrace:  Dr. Lewis Nonye Obodo, 50, of Mgbala Agwa Oguta Native Authorities Space of Imo State; Inspector Oscar Mbaeri, 40, of Agwa Oguta LGA, Imo State; Chigozirrn Festus Nneji, 39, of Egwelu Atta Njaba Native Authorities Space of Imo State; Anyanwu Amarachi, 30, of No. 76 Lobo Road Owerri, and Desmond Okonkwo, 38, of Nnempi Oru West Native Authorities Space of Imo State.

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He defined that they got here ahead to determine the infamous kidnapper, after he was arrested by Nwaiwu and his operatives, on July 28, 2020, in his home in Owerri. Throughout the operation, the operatives recovered N4.2 million money from him and his spouse, proper of their home. In addition they recovered 4 AK-47 rifles, 120 rounds of seven.6mm stay ammunition, and Lexus 330 SUV with Reg No EDO URM 404 EL. One of many most celebrated of the instances wherein they have been concerned was the killing of a Nigerian Drug and Legislation Enforcement Company (NDLEA) officer in Imo State, Uwakwe Celestine Amauche Chukwu, 34, on Might 15, 2020. They gunned him down in cold-blood and severely wounded his colleague, throughout a shootout.

However when operatives stormed their camp situated in a thick forest in Omoku, Rivers State, they recovered the gun snatched from the slain NDLEA officer. In all, the hull of recovered arms embrace: 4 AK-47 rifles, one gentle assault rifle (LAR) and one submachine gun belonging to NDLEA. They reportedly combed the forest for 4 days and it led to the arrest of the opposite gang members.

Ebenezer’s account of involvement

In a chat with Saturday Solar, Ebenezer, stated: “I attended Central Faculty Awara, I dropped out in Main three. Thereafter I learnt electrical work. My elder brother, David, was an armed robber/kidnapper. I joined his gang till he was arrested in Lagos State. He’s at the moment serving jail phrases at Kirikiri Most Safety Jail.  He handed over the management to me and I shaped my very own gang and served because the operational commander and an executor for the gang. I began operation in September, 2019. Since then, I’ve kidnapped over 40 victims.

“I kidnapped victims even on Sundays. On Might 13, 2020, we kidnapped two victims, husband and spouse at Amakohia flyover in Owerri. The spouse raised alarm. At Orji street junction, we noticed two NDLEA officers.  I killed one in all them and critically injured the opposite. He dropped his gun and ran. We carted away the rifles – a submachine gun and one gentle assault rifle. We escaped with the kidnapped couple and took them to our camp. We collected N1.8m ransom.”

On how his spouse, Ogechi, bought concerned within the kidnapping enterprise, he stated: “I bought married to my spouse, a graduate, by mendacity to her that I’m a banker and oil vendor. It was in April, 2020 that my spouse found that I’m a kidnapper. All the identical, she joined me within the operation.  The ransom we collected from victims ranged from N1.5m to N3m. It was my spouse’s responsibility to return to our camp in Omoku to gather the ransom and share the cash to my gang members and use the remaining for our capital tasks. We’re constructing a home in Awara Ohaji in Egbema Native Authorities Space of Imo State.

“My father, Fabian, is my armourer who stored for me a few of my AK-47 rifles. Any time, I went to the village, I do give him between N20, 000 and N30, 000. My youthful brother, Victor, all the time receives two weapons to take to the village and he would hand them over to my mom, Happiness, who was additionally my arms keeper.”

The chat swings to the function of Pastor Agu and he confessed that he all the time prayed for them each time they went for operations. “He provides us drinks to soak up his shrine and after taking the water drawn from his shrine, no bullet would penetrate us. Every time we collected any ransom like N7 million, the Pastor would come to our camp to gather his share – typically N500, 000 and typically N900, 000, relying on the quantity of cash we collected from victims.  Pastor Caleb visited us at Omoku to encourage and provides us some charms to assist us overcome our enemies. I used to be arrested when operatives stormed my home at Work Structure, Owerri. They arrested me and my spouse who’s at the moment seven months pregnant. I’ve confessed to police detectives my legal actions in numerous states.”

His spouse’s account of participation

His spouse, Ogechi, 30, took over the narrative as she advised Saturday Solar her life historical past: “I attended Group Main Faculty, Naze, and from there proceeded to Group Secondary Faculty, Naze in 2009. I learn Accounting at Alvan Ikoku School of Schooling, Owerri, Imo State. I graduated in 2018. However for COVID-19, I used to be speculated to go for NYSC in August 2020. I met my husband, Ebenezer and we had courtship for about two months. We bought married in 2019. He advised me that he was a banker and additionally engaged in oil offers. I didn’t know he’s a kidnapper till April this yr after I listened rigorously throughout his dialogue along with his gang members. I confronted him afterward. I moved my baggage out of his home and went to remain in my sister’s place in Owerri.  I didn’t inform my dad and mom what I used to be passing by way of. He got here and pleaded with me and my sisters. I’m already pregnant for him. I moved again to the home and we began residing as husband and spouse.

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“I didn’t inform my father in-law too that his son is a kidnapper. However I didn’t know that everyone in my husband’s household is a kidnapper till we have been all arrested on July 28, 2020. It was an enormous disgrace for me. I can not even perceive the thriller of life. I began to go to my husband within the camp at Omoku in Rivers State and picked up ransoms like N2m, N3m, N7m and shared the cash to different gang members and used the the rest to proceed the undertaking we’re doing in our village My husband spends two weeks and typically, two months within the camp at Omoku relying on the actions happening.”

Giving additional perception into her life, she stated: “I attend Winners Chapel on Port-Harcourt Street, Owerri. I’m a protocol officer/usher. I hail from Ogamma Awara Ohaji Egbema. I hearken to the phrase of God in church. I by no means thought my husband and I might be arrested, till July 28, once we have been each arrested in the home. I’m seven-months pregnant.”

A father’s half within the infamy

Fabian, stated:  “I’m a farmer by occupation. I’ve eight kids, my first son, David, is an armed robber and a kidnapper. However he’s at the moment in Kirikiri Jail, Lagos.  My second son, Ebenezer is a kidnapper who all the time retains his AK-47rifles in my custody. My spouse, Happiness, additionally retains weapons for my son. He used to present us N20, 000, N30, 000 relying on his capability. My fourth son, Victor, is an errand boy who collects the gun from Ebenezer and brings it to the village for my spouse to maintain. Police detectives arrested and recovered from us some rifles which prompted my spouse to run away from the home. It a disgrace that every one my members of the family are kidnappers together with, my daughter-in -law. We thought we have been having fun with the cash till we have been arrested.”

How I turned a gun courier – youthful brother

Victor, 18, stated:  “I attended Central Faculty, Awara, and proceeded to Nice King and Queen Worldwide Faculty, Orji, Owerri. I’m in JSS3. It was my brother, Ebenezer who’s sponsoring my schooling.  I know that he’s a kidnapper. He all the time gave me AK-47 rifles to take to the village and I often hand them over to my mom to maintain for him.”

Agu, 42, the “anointed” Pastor, advised Saturday Solar:  “I hail from Umuoni Agwa in Oguta Native Authorities Space of Imo State. I’m the Founding father of Glorious Jesus Ministry. I attended Umuoni Main Faculty, and later proceeded to Agwa Secondary Faculty. I attended Faculty of Theology however I didn’t end. I’m a prayer warrior. I met and knew Ebenezer the place he used to promote Indian hemps and sooner or later he advised me that his enterprise was not making a lot progress. I prayed for him. Later, I bought to know that he’s a kidnapper. I turned his religious chief and director of the gang.

“I do go to them of their camp in Rivers State. I used to hope for them and infrequently go there to gather my very own share of ransom; typically N350, 000, N900, 000 or N700, 000.  I do give them charms and sizzling drinks to take in order that each time policemen shot at them, they’d not die. I all the time took them to my shrine inside my church the place I stay and do some incantations for them to succeed. Instantly they arrive again after operation I might accumulate my very own share. My spouse, Favour, is an evangelist within the Apostolic Church in Anambra State. I’ve seven kids.”

However he narrowly escaped loss of life when the youths of his space bought to find out about his true id, a person they’d speculated to be a person of God and revered as such. “The youths in Agwa wished to mob me when the Anti-Kidnapping operatives arrested me in my shrine,” he stated. “They know me as a pastor; it was when the youths learnt that I’m a part of the kidnappers that they turned offended.”

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Extra suspects’ confessions

One other suspect, Ikechukwu Njoku, stated:  “I’m the protocol officer and a boy to Pastor Caleb Agu. I used to “bike” (transport) victims by way of the monitor street to the purpose of pick-up on the creek. I didn’t know Pastor Caleb was a member of the kidnap gang till he despatched me to give gas to Ebenezer and his gang members. That point they have been stranded alongside Port-Harcourt Street, with kidnapped victims inside their automobile. I gave them the gas and it was that day that I knew that Pastor Caleb is a member of the gang. He didn’t give me kobo (a dime).”

Kennedy Okwuonu, 40, who hails from Onicha in Obingwa Native Authorities Atea of Abia State defined: “I’m Ebenezer’s-in-law. I do present the gang with arduous medicine in addition to different logistics on the camp in Omoku, Rivers State.”

Victims’ accounts of ordeals

All stated and accomplished, individuals, particularly the victims, are comfortable, that, ultimately, nemesis has caught up with this gang which as soon as made their lives depressing. In interactions with Saturday Solar, they heaved a sigh of aid on the growth. When our reporter visited the NDLEA workplace in Owerri and spoke with its state commander, Mr. Jack Inam, he didn’t cover this truth: “I and the complete command are in comfortable temper over the arrest of the killer of our employees. He was killed on Might 15, 2020, throughout an official project with the Imo State “Operation Search and Flush” workforce.  He was killed by Ebenezer and his gang members. When the incident occurred, I visited the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Isaac Akinmoyede. He gave me the reassurance that they’d arrest the perpetrators.

“On July 28, 2020, the members who have been arrested confessed to have killed an NDLEA official throughout their operation. The Anti-kidnapping Commander and his operatives recovered the officers’ rifles from them. I realized that the loss of life of my gallant officer was not in useless. I need to thank the Nigerian Police. We are going to proceed to associate them, being the mom of all the safety companies. The deceased officer was buried on June 13, 2020 in Enugu Ezike, Igbo Eze North Native Authorities Space of Enugu State. We’re grateful to God.”

A kidnap sufferer, Dr. Lewis Nonye Obodo, 50, who hails from Mgbala Agwa Oguta Native Authorities Space of Imo State can also be comfortable over their arrest. His testimony: “I attended Central Faculty for my main college schooling, Holy Ghost Juniorate, Ihiala, for my secondary college and Abia State College Uturu, for my college schooling. I graduated in 1996 in Optometry. I’m an completed medical practitioner, businessman, politician and philanthropist. At current, I’m on the governing board of the Lagos College Instructing Hospital (LUTH).

“On July 19, 2020, I used to be kidnapped on the inland Street Akanchawa at about 7:45pm. I used to be within the firm of pals once we bumped into the kidnappers. They shot into the air to scare away individuals and used the alternative to kidnap me and my pals. They took us to an unknown vacation spot .After we bought to their camp, they tied me up and beat me to the state of coma. It was Ebenezer and his gang members that kidnapped us. They began calling my relations to carry 200 thousand . Later they insisted on them bringing the cash in naira.  They collected N7.5 million from my relations. They picked up the cash in the bush the place they requested them to drop it. They threatened to kill me. I spent 9 days of their captivity. I used to be panicking as as to whether I could be allowed to return out alive after the ransom had been paid. However as God would have it, they later launched me.”

Saturday Solar gathered that Ebenezer and his gang members had been terrorizing individuals for a while now. At a time, their actions prompted the speedy previous governor of Imo State, Chief Emeka Ihedioha, to launch “Operation Iron Gate” to go after them. However when Governor Hope Uzodinma got here in, he gave a marching order to the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Isaac Akinmoyede, to go after the abductors. It was Operation ‘Search and Flush” which was launched after the marching order that led to the arrest of the infamous gang which can quickly be charged to courtroom after police investigation.

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Supply: Saturday Solar

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