The Police Command in Benue on Thursday paraded four fake Nigerian Merchant Navy Officers and 11 other suspects over alleged kidnapping, rape, armed robbery, child trafficking, and illegal arms manufacturing.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mukaddas Garba told newsmen in Makurdi that the faked Naval officers arrested were, Stephen Oguniran, Daniel Igiho, Ada Ngbede and Ada Ofugocho.
Garba disclosed that the fake officers were arrested on July 31 at an illegal checkpoint they mounted at Okenyi, Okpoga Road and were extorting money from motorists.
He also said one Terna Taga 18, was arrested for allegedly raping and impregnating a 10-year-old girl (name withheld).
Garba also said that the Force on Aug. 2 arrested Mkarvter Shagbe and Terseer Makuna from Vandiekya Local Government Area with an AK47 rifle loaded with 10 rounds of live ammunition.
He said further investigation led to the arrest of illegal arms manufacturers Terhembafan Sevav and Vishi Avav.
“The police recovered two more AK47 rifles, two single barrel pump actions, two locally made pistol, four magazines, one gas cylinder, assorted gun manufacturing tools and charms,” he said.
The commissioner said that the command also arrested one Daniel Achogwu for alleged child trafficking.
He said Achogwu, a resident of Otukpo town, took a pregnant girl to Aba, Abia State, where she was delivered of a child that he later sold to an unknown person.
Garba said one Emmanuel Ilom was arrested with a locally-made gun and a cartridge during a Stop and Search Operation in Ugbokolo.
He said the Force also arrested one Msonga Akujor, a resident at Jootar village in Ukum Local Government, with an AK47 rifle during a raid.
Garba said one Ahmed Ali was arrested during an armed robbery attack at Ankpa Street, Otukpo town, following a distress call by some residents
“Ali was arrested with a locally made pistol and charms and confessed that his gang members were still at large,” he said.
He said the command recently deployed numerous strategies to fight crime in the state for the purpose of ensuring a peaceful environment.
He said through the new strategies, the command was able to “map out possible black spots in the state and deploy its manpower and resources to ensure that such places were secured.
“Operation Puff Adder is obviously securing the highways and local governments where kidnapping and armed robbery were rampant.
“These strategies have aided the prevention of crime in the state and the apprehension of offenders. Several offenders have been charged to court,” he said.