The Anambra State Police command has confirmed the arrest of a criminal gang of armed robbers led by one Okechukwu Okpo that specialized in robbing and raping hotel guests.
Recovered from Okpo, aged 24 years of Ndobasi village, of Ebonyi State and his gang a locally fabricated pistol, two live cartridges and three plasma television sets among other items.
“The police who acted on tip off, stormed their base which was an uncompleted building overlooking the Ndikelionwu-Oko Federal highway.
The gang, according to the release from the Anambra Police Public Relations Officer(PPRO), Ikenga Tochukwu,
on sighting the police vehicles opened fire on the operatives.
They eagle-eyed officers consequently responded swiftly, engaging the robbers in a gun battle and they ran.
The PPRO disclosed that the gang recently robbed a hotel in Ndikelionwu, Orumba North Local Government Area of the state, where a female staff was also raped during the robbery incident.
This was contained in a statement from the PPRO issued to newsmen on Sunday.
The statement read in parts: “Police Operatives attached to Oko divisional headquarters acting on a credible information in the early hours of 6/9/2022 bursted a criminal hideout, in an uncompleted building along Oko – Ufuma expressway in Orumba North L.G.A.
“Operatives arrested one Okechukwu Okpo ‘M’ age 24 years of Ndobasi village, Ebonyi State. One locally fabricated pistol, two live cartridges and three plasma television were recovered.
“The criminal gang on sighting the police vehicle opened fire on the operatives, who responded swiftly, engaging the armed robbers in a gun battle. While other gang members fled the scene, Okechukwu was captured.
“Preliminary investigations show that the gang was responsible for over 25 armed robbery, kidnapping, and car-snatching incidents that have happened along Oko—Ufuma—Uga—Amaokpala Expressway, among others .
“The most recent, according to the confessional statement of the suspect (Okechukwu) was an attack in a hotel at Ndikelionwu on 13/8/2022, where a female staff was raped and the gang also made away with three television and other items. Efforts are ongoing to arrest other fleeing gang members.”
The PPRO noted also that four other suspected criminals arrested in a separate incident; he said the suspects were arrested in conjunction with local security, and include; one Chukwubike Anieto ‘m’ aged 20 years from Agulu, Chukwuemerie Ike ‘m’ aged 36 years from Agulu, Chidera Muo ‘m’ aged 25 years from Neni and Chukwuma Israel ‘m’ aged 28 years all residing at Umuezeani village Akwaeze.
“We recovered one berreta pistol, three motorcycles, one axe, three machetes, one police belt, one Sumec generator, thirteen different brands of phones and other incriminating items.
“Interrogation by the police operatives revealed that the gang attacked a police Constable, dispossessed him of his personal belonging on 29/8/2022 along Umukabia Okofia village, Neni. Also most recently, the gang were caught in the act on 9/9/2022 in an attempt to rob a lady of her belonging along Okofia village, Neni