Two members of a gang, who came from Lagos State to terrorise Ibadan residents, have been nabbed by men of the Oyo State Police Command. The suspects, Muritala Owoyemi and Sheriff Mukaila, were among those paraded recently at the Command headquarters at Eleyele, Ibadan.
According to the Commissioner of Police, Mr Mbu Joseph Mbu, one of the suspects, Owoyemi, was arrested at Odo Oba Elere area of Ibadan, on September 21, at about 1.30am by a vigilance group in the area, in collaboration with a patrol team of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Ibadan.
Owoyemi was said to have robbed the residents of Odo Oba Elere of their belongings, before the operation of the gang was disrupted by the vigilance men who arrested him as he tried to escape. He was handed over to SARS operatives for further investigations.
The commissioner claimed further that during interrogation, the suspect allegedly confessed his involvement in the robbery operation as well as previous robbery operations in the area.
He added that SARS operatives moved to Lagos on September 27, to arrest other members of the gang, and their efforts paid off when they apprehended one of them, one Sheriff Mukaila a.k.a. Sanle at his hideout in Ijora Badia area of Lagos.
Police sources said that Mukaila also allegedly confessed to his involvement in robbery with other members just as it was discovered that the two suspects were alleged ex-convicts. Police investigation were said to have revealed that Muritala was remanded in prison for stabbing someone, while Mukaila stole a motorcycle. Mukaila was described as the alleged informant, who usually pointed at the houses his gang members would raid since he hails from Ibadan and knew his way around the area very well before leaving for Lagos to work as a bus conductor.
Owoyemi stated: “I am 29 years old. I am from Iseyin but live in Ibadan. I am a vulcaniser. I called my friend, Mukaila, and told him that I had secured my freedom from my master from whom I learnt vulcanising. I said that I needed to work to fend for myself. He asked me to join him in Lagos to work as bus conductor.
“We were there when a guy called Bidemi told us to follow him to Ibadan for robbery. We came to Odo Oba area in the midnight to rob some residents. We came with knife, not gun. We collected phones and were yet to get money when I was arrested. We were four that went for the operation. I was running away when I was apprehended. Others ran away.”
Mukaila also claimed that it was the same Bidemi that lured him into robbery. According to him, “I am 30 years old and a native of Ibadan. I have been smoking hemp for two years. I was working as a bus conductor in Lagos and I later invited Muritala to join me when he said he needed a job. I knew Bidemi at a hemp joint at Idi-Oro area in Lagos. I only got N3,000 from the operation and I escaped when my friend was arrested. I went back to Lagos but the policemen came to where I was sleeping at Ijora to arrest me,” he alleged.