Eight Members Of Cybercrime Syndicate Arrested In Rivers
Operatives of Hawk Tactical team of the Rivers State Police Command last week while acting on reliable intelligence on the activities of some suspected kidnappers and cyber fraudsters, raided a hideout in Cypo Estate, Umuebule 1, Etche Local Government Area. Arrested eight (8) suspects: namely Desmond Williams aged 19, Isaac Patrick aged 22, Prince Nelson aged 17, John Ahmed aged 17, Thankgod Neesogho aged 22, Christian Adewale aged 22, Uche Alaga aged 16, and Nwika Fakae aged 22 all male, while one victim (name withheld) aged 20 years was rescued.
SP Grace Iringe Koko, Public Relations Officer of the Rivers State Police Command said the victim was lured by his friend who promised to give him a job in the hotel.
SP Koko stated that when the job wasn’t forthcoming, the victim opted to go back to his home, but his captors did not let him. She disclosed that the victim was beaten severely and inflicted with body injuries when he insisted to go home.
The Police Image maker said the suspects thereafter demanded #500,000 ransom from victim’s parents as a condition to release him.
SP Koko listed exhibits recovered from the suspects to include seven (7) laptops and some substance suspected to be illicit hard drugs adding that Investigation is ongoing.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police, CP Okon Effiong, has advised parents to monitor the activities of their children and be weary of the friends they keep.
One of the suspects Isaac Patrick who spoke to journalists on behalf of others denied kidnapping the victim. He however admitted being an internet fraudster.
Mr Patrick explained that the victim’s parents allegedly brought the victim to them (suspects) to teach him rudiments of internet fraud.
Mr Patrick disclosed that the victim within few days insisted on going back home but they (suspects) refused that he should pay for their laptop he spoilt and all the food they gave him before they we let him go.
The prime suspect further explained that he was in his house when the Police came and arrested him on May 9.
In an interview with the victim (name withheld), the victim explained that he told the prime suspect he was looking for Job and the prime suspect asked him to come to Oyigbo axis, where the prime suspect met him and took him to their residence but he declined when he observed that they were into internet fraud.
The victim said when he found out that it was an internet fraud job the suspects were into, he opted to go but the suspects flogged him severally and asked him to tell the (victim’s) mother to bring 500,000 naira before they will release him.