The Nigerian Police, Zamfara Command, has arrested a citizen of Niger Republic, Shehu Kachalla, and four other suspects involved in banditry, kidnapping, cattle rustling, and trading firearms across the North-western region of Nigeria.
While the foreigner confessed that he had been in the business for more than three years, the four other suspects, including Abubakar Ali, an indigene of Niger State, were reported to be Nigerians, and they were arrested with four AK-49 rifles, nine magazines, 960 live ammunition, and assorted charms.
During interrogation, the foreigner disclosed that he had sold no fewer than 450 rifles to different criminal gangs across the northwest region to attack communities and farmers across the region.
Ali, meanwhile, narrated that before his arrest, his operational zone was across Kagarko and Chikun Local Government Areas of Kaduna State where he had perpetrated several heinous acts.
The suspect further confessed that he had been in the criminal business for over three years and has killed five of his victims who could not afford to pay ramson to regain freedom from captivity.
According to the suspect, their leader pays them between N600,000 and N700,000 in any abduction operation that attracts N20 million ransom and above from the victim’s family.
As gathered, the suspects were said to have been terrorising various communities in Zamfara, Kaduna, Katsina States in the North West, and Niger State in the north-central part of the country.
Before their arrest, the suspects were alleged to have kidnapped the younger brother of one Dr. Dauda Lawal and confessed that they collected N20 million ransom, as well as received N10 million ransom for the abduction of the daughter of one Engineer Yahaya Maradun.
The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), for the command, Shehu Mohammed, who paraded the suspects at the Police Headquarters in Gusau, the state capital, explained that the arrest of the suspects was a result of the collaboration between the police and the state leadership of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN).
After the presentation of the suspects on Friday, Mohammed assured Nigerians that the command would continue to work with any group or persons willing to work for the peace of Zamfara and the northwest region.
While assuring Zamfarans that the command would in few days ensure the state was free from all criminal activities, the police spokesman disclosed that the suspects were arrested through the efforts of the Federal Intelligence Investigation Bureau and Special Tactical Squad deployed by the Inspector General of Police to rid Zamfara and the northwest region of crime.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Security and Home Affairs in Zamfara, Abubakar Dauran, who witnessed the parade of the suspects at the Police Headquarters, promised that the state government would not relent in its continuous effort to bring a lasting end to criminality in Zamfara.
Dauran also appealed to the residents to join hands with government and security agencies in bringing down the activities of criminal elements making life unbearable to innocent citizens.