Vigilance group leader, others arrested for kidnapping, ritual killings

The commander of a vigilance group in the Ankpa Local Government Area of Kogi State, Yakubu Hamidu, and his men, have been arrested by the police in connection with kidnapping and ritual killings in the state.

The suspects were arrested along with other individuals who allegedly bought body parts from them.

Some of their victims were identified simply as James, Christopher, Mohammed, Snall Case, Omu and a police inspector, Abdul Alfa, who was reportedly ambushed and axed to death.

Alfa was reportedly killed on November 28, 2017 along Ejule police outpost in the Ofu LGA while on foot patrol. His killers escaped with his rifle.

One pump-action rifle, two locally-made-single-barrelled guns and three short axes were said to have been recovered from the suspects.
Saturday PUNCH learnt that men of the Inspector-General of Police Strike Force attached to ‘Operation Absolute Sanity’ went after the suspects following complaints of missing persons in the community and environs.

Apart from Hamidu, other arrested suspects are Abdullahi Ali aka Halims; Alhaji Shaibu Adamu aka Aye-Marina, Julius Alhassan; Sheu Haliru aka Fedeco; Akwu Audu; Alhaji Abdullahi Tijani; Ubile Attah, who reportedly led the killing of the police inspector.

Others are Akwu Audu, Alhaji Abdullahi Zakari, Sale Adama, Musa Abdulahi, Yakubu Yahaya, Adama Shagari, Baba Isah, Isaac Alfa and Idoko Benjamin.

They were paraded in Abuja on Friday by the Force Public Relations Officer, Acting DCP Jimoh Moshood.

Moshood said in the course of investigation, it was discovered that the gang was responsible for kidnapping, gruesome murder, and ritual killing of people, including travellers.

He said, “The gang leader, Yakubu Hamidu, a vigilance group commander in Ankpa, and his men are the hit men responsible for the killings of several victims and removal of their organs. They sold male and female parts including head and kidney to personalities within and outside the state for rituals.

“During interrogations, the gang leader and his members now in police custody, confessed to the crime and admitted that they were sponsored and were working for Abdullahi Ali aka Halims and Alhaji Shaibu Adamu aka Aye-Marina whose driver known as Zakaru received the body parts from Yakubu Hamidu.”

The Force spokesperson stated that Ali, who had been arrested, was suspected to have used the proceeds of the crime to acquire properties, including big hotels and several filling stations in Kogi State.

 He said Adamu was also suspected to have built mansions and four filling stations each in Kogi and Benue states.

Moshood added, “All the suspects have made voluntary statements to the police and have confessed to the various criminal roles they played in the recent kidnapping and gruesome murder of innocent residents and the killing of a police inspector, Abdul Alfa, attached to the Ejule Police Outpost in Kogi State.

“Investigation is being concluded and efforts intensified to arrest other suspects, including prominent personalities linked to the crime. They will all be arraigned after the completion of investigation.”

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