Suspected kidnapper blames harsh economy

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Residents of Odi Olowo in the Mushin area of Lagos State on Wednesday nabbed a middle-aged man, Charles Ibeleme, whom they accused of being a kidnapper.

PUNCH Metro learnt that Ibeleme was apprehended while allegedly taking away his victim, a child whose name could not yet be ascertained.

Our correspondent gathered that Ibeleme, who begged the mob not to lynch him, said he was forced into kidnapping because of the harsh economic condition in the country.

He was thereafter handed over to policemen from the Olosan division.

An eyewitness, who gave his name only as Sunmibare, said Ibeleme pleaded with the mob not to lynch him, as he was only finding a means of survival.

He said, “We caught him in the afternoon. He was taking a child away from our area. People beat him up and tore his clothes. The man was afraid that he would be lynched and pleaded that his life should be spared. He said he was looking for money.

“He explained that the harsh economy forced him into the act. This got people angry and they would have killed him, but for the arrival of the policemen.”

Meanwhile, two robbers were arrested in the Okota area while allegedly going for an operation.

Our correspondent learnt that the suspects – Emmanuel Johnson and Emmanuel Sunday – were arrested by the police around Chemist bus stop at about 10pm on Tuesday.

A police source said the suspects, who rode a motorcycle, were going to attack some people, who were celebrating sallah in the area when they were arrested.

He said, “The two of them have no fixed addresses. They came on a motorcycle and they were intercepted at the bus stop. When we searched them, we found a locally-made pistol with two cartridges. So, they were arrested. It was at the closing of the sallah holiday and the suspects said they wanted to hit some targeted places and rob the residents.”

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, SP Dolapo Badmos, confirmed the incidents.

She said, “In the Isolo arrest, the motorcycle was impounded. The case will be transferred to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Ikeja, for further investigation.

“In the Odi Olowo incident, Ibeleme was mobbed on an allegation of attempted kidnap. The case has been transferred to the State Department of Criminal Investigation and Intelligence, Yaba. for further investigation.”

Source: Punch

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