Fake mil­i­tary men, two oth­ers hi­jack petrol-laden tanker • Po­lice foil op­er­a­tion in Lagos, ar­rest two

The Punch - - METRO - Deji Lambo

MEN of the Lagos State Po­lice Com­mand have ar­rested two sus­pects, Charles Obllomo and Osita Onyeka, for al­legedly con­niv­ing with four sus­pected fake mil­i­tary men to hi­jack a petrol-laden tanker around the Mile 2 area of the state.

PUNCH Metro gath­ered that the truck driver, Muham­madu Mande, and his mo­tor boy, Lawali Usman, were con­vey­ing the prod­uct to Niger State when four men, who were dressed in mil­i­tary uni­form, ac­costed them and or­dered them to dis­em­bark from the ve­hi­cle.

Obllomo and Onyeka then took over the truck and were driv­ing it to an un­known des­ti­na­tion, while the four men in mil­i­tary uni­form or­dered Mande and Usman to en­ter a Toy­ota Corolla car, which fol­lowed the petrol-laden tanker closely.

The po­lice, how­ever, in­ter­cepted the cul­prits on their way and after an ex­change of gun­fire with the fake mil­i­tary men, Obllomo and Onyeka were ar­rested, while their ac­com­plices es­caped.

The state Po­lice Pub­lic Re­la­tions Of­fi­cer, Bala Elkana, said in a state­ment on Sun­day that the tanker, with num­ber plate Gage 743 XN, and the Toy­ota Corolla were also im­pounded, ad­ding that the fake mil­i­tary men es­caped with bul­let wounds.

Elkana stated, “On Satur­day, December 28, 2019, around 7pm, act­ing on the strength of in­for­ma­tion from a re­li­able source, po­lice op­er­a­tives from the Itire Di­vi­sion, led by the Di­vi­sional Po­lice Of­fi­cer, Bark­fur Kromkyes, in­ter­cepted a DAF 85 tanker with num­ber plate, Gage 743 XN, loaded with 40,000 litres of a petroleum prod­uct along the Iyana-itire pin­down point, Mile 2. The truck driver, Muham­madu Mande, 42, of Yauri in Kebbi State, and the mo­tor boy, Lawali Usman, 34, of Minna in Niger State, were res­cued un­hurt.

“Two sus­pects, Charles Obllomo, 37, of No. 22 Bara Ayetoro Street, off Boundary Road, Apapa, and Osita Onyeka, 35, of Wa­sai area, Orile, were ar­rested. In his state­ment, the truck driver averred that his truck was loaded with 40, 000 litres of PMS at the Swift De­pot, Apapa, was billed for Kon­tagora in Niger State. That on get­ting to a bad por­tion of the road at Mile 2, four men in mil­i­tary uni­form stopped him and asked what prod­uct he was car­ry­ing be­fore or­der­ing him and his mo­tor boy out of the truck and into a red Toy­ota Corolla.

“The two sus­pects in po­lice cus­tody, Charles Obllomo and Osita Onyeka, took over the tanker. The driver and his mo­tor boy were sand­wiched by the four men in mil­i­tary uni­form in the Toy­ota Corolla. The truck was be­ing driven be­hind the Toy­ota Corolla and head­ing for an un­known des­ti­na­tion be­fore it was in­ter­cepted by the po­lice.

“Ac­cord­ing to the driver, he ini­tially thought the hi­jack­ers were mil­i­tary men on stop and search duty un­til they started beat­ing him and his mo­tor boy and threat­ened to kill them if they re­fused to fol­low their or­ders.

“The two sus­pects were ar­rested in the truck and taken to the sta­tion. The four sus­pects in mil­i­tary uni­forms es­caped with bul­let wounds after a fierce gun bat­tle with the po­lice. The truck and the Toy­ota Corolla were re­cov­ered and moved to the po­lice sta­tion.”

Elkana stated that the Pm­sladen tanker was handed over to the owner, Sani Sa­maila, the man­ager, Petroleum Nige­ria Lim­ited, Kon­tagora, Niger State, ad­ding that the ar­rested sus­pects would be charged.

He said, “Two pairs of ve­hi­cle num­ber plates and mil­i­tary caps were re­cov­ered from the Corolla car. The tanker con­tain­ing the PMS was handed over to the owner, Sani Sa­maila, 55, the man­ager, Petroleum Nige­ria Lim­ited, Kon­tagora, Niger State. The owner of the tanker was full of grat­i­tude to the Com­mis­sioner of Po­lice, Lagos State Com­mand, for com­ing to their res­cue.

“He stated that tanker own­ers had suf­fered losses from the ac­tiv­i­ties of tanker hi­jack­ers in the past with­out rem­edy, but since the ar­rival of the new com­mis­sioner of po­lice and the de­ploy­ment of po­lice of­ficers in ve­hi­cle and mo­tor­cy­cle pa­trols, such ugly in­ci­dents had re­duced.

“Mem­bers of the syn­di­cate usu­ally hi­jack tankers, off­load the con­tent in lo­ca­tions mostly out­side Lagos State and aban­don the tankers for the own­ers to find them after some days or weeks. The Com­mis­sioner of Po­lice, Lagos State, Ha­keem Odu­mosu, di­rected the Com­man­der, Spe­cial Anti-rob­bery Squad to take over the in­ves­ti­ga­tion and en­sure that the flee­ing sus­pects are ar­rested. An in­ves­ti­ga­tion is on­go­ing; the two sus­pects will be charged.”

• The tanker hi­jack­ers

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.