17th August, 2021
A 78 year-old man, identified by the police as Joseph Okala, has been arrested by the police after he was found with two Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG) launchers.
Okala was arrested in Makurdi, capital of Benue state.
Police Spokesman, Commissioner Frank Mba, in a statement Monday said the suspect, from investigations, is a middleman between criminal suppliers of the weapon and the end-users.
“He is currently assisting the Police with vital information that will further help in breaking the supply chain and arresting other suspects”, Mba said.
Okala was one of the 39 criminal suspects paraded by the police on Monday.
Mba said the police harvested apart from the RPGs, 13 AK47 rifles, 4 locally made pistols, 58 wraps of dynamite, 769 AK47 live ammunition, 14 AK47 magazines, 30 live cartridges.
Police also seized their mobile phones, 157 SIM cards, amongst other incriminating items.
Among the suspects was a notorious 4-man trans-border arms smuggling syndicate in Cross River State.
The principal suspect, Ntui Lambert ‘m’ 36-year-old native of Ikom, whose father is a Nigerian and mother, a Cameroonian – was arrested in possession of different calibre of sophisticated weapons.
Caught with him were 58 wraps of explosive materials suspected to be dynamite and ammunition through an intelligence-led operation by Police operatives.
Further investigations by the Police team revealed that the suspect engages in trans-border arms smuggling with his three other gang members who are members of a secessionist group in Cameroun.
Police also arrested one Yahaya Zakari a.k.a Excellency ‘m’ 46 years old in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
Yahaya is a member of a cybercrime syndicate that specializes in stealing mobile phones of innocent citizens, and using their SIM cards to gain access to their bank accounts to carry out unauthorized financial transactions.
Other members of his gang are Shehu Aliyu ‘m’ 22 years old, Umar Abubakar ‘m’ 42 years old and Abubakar Mohammed ‘m’ 41 years old. A total of 157 SIM cards were recovered from the gang by the Police team.
All the suspects will be charged to court on completion of investigations, Mba said.