Saturday, 7 February 2015

Why I Went Back To Robbery After Release From Kirikiri-Suspect

Two members of a dreaded armed robbery gang that allegedly specialised in stopping and searching members of the public around the National Theatre in Orile Iganmu area of Lagos State have been arrested by the police, while efforts are on to arrest other members of the gang, who escaped after the police foiled a robbery operation.

Crime and Security gathered that,the two suspects, Olalekan Olamide and Jolly Abienekpen  and other members of their gang were on duty when the divisional police officer in charge of Iponri Police Station received a distress call and sent his men to the scene of the attempted robbery.

A police source said that on the day of their arrest on sighting the officers, Abienekpen immediately threw away his gun, but the gun and four live cartridges were recovered from him. He was later transferred to Special Anti-robbery Squad for further investigation.

Abienekpen, while speaking with Crime and Security narrated:

“I was arrested on January 4, 2015 because of robbery. My friend and I went to the National Theatre to rob people of their phones and valuables. We succeeded in robbing two people before we were eventually arrested while we were about to launch another attack on an unsuspecting victim.”
The suspect, who claimed to be a barber, further narrated that
 “I was working as a barber and I was making   between N1,000 and N1,500 daily and I was delivering between N500 to N700 to the shop owner depending on the day’s patronage.”
Abienekpen, who blamed his involvement in robbery on his inability to meet with the needs of his family, stated he was initiated into the armed robbery by a friend of his, identified as Shitta.
“Shitta introduced me to Oyo and Aloma who are members of the robbery gang. Usually four of us go for robbery operation. I met the three of them at an Indian hemp joint where I usually go to smoke. That was how I started discussing with them and they introduced me into their gang operations,” the suspect said.
He further said:
 “As the newest intake of the gang, I carry the bag that is used to put all the valuables we steal from people. They don’t give me good money after the operations; they only give me money to keep body and soul together before the next operation. They give me between N4,000 to N7,000 after each operation.”
The suspect, while justifying his involvement in armed robbery said,
 “I stopped barbing last year after they demolished our shops in NPA quarters, in Victoria Island. To make ends meet I started pushing cart in Iddo; that was what I used to feed and cater for myself and my family.
“I didn’t decide to go into armed robbery; it was peer pressures and the negative influence of my friends. I was enticed because of the way they spend money; that was the main reason I joined them to enable me raise money to establish my barbing business. If I had about N30, 000, I would have been able to establish my business,” the Edo State-born suspect said.
Twenty one-year-old Olalekan, a jail bird who was recently released from Kirikiri prison, also claimed to have been instigated into armed-robbery by a friend, whom he identified simply as Jolly.
“I knew Jolly at Iddo where I worked as a cart pusher. I have only participated in one robbery operation. I needed money to take care of some pressing issues that was why I agreed to go with him for the operation.”“He didn’t promise me any specific amount but said that whatsoever we got from the operation that night would be shared equally. I live with my elder brother, Mutiu.
On why he was sent to prison, the suspect said that
 “I was in maximum prison in Kirikiri, for vandalising, stealing and selling government property.I stole some copper wire from Apagbon and sold it for N70, 000. I used the money to rent a house.
The image maker in charge of the state police command, Kenneth Nwosu, confirmed the arrest of the suspects to Crime and Security and assured that the police would arrest the runaway members of the gang. 


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