Police Rescue Kidnapped Doctor In Abia, Arrest One Suspect

Operatives attached to the World Bank Police Station in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, have rescued Dr. Innocent Iwegbu, who was kidnapped on Monday, July 13, while on his way to work.

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr. Anthony Ogbizi, who confirmed his rescue, said Iwegbu was rescued unhurt, adding that no ransom was paid for his release.

The CP added that one of the suspected kidnappers identified as Ogbonna Ikechukwu, was also arrested by the police detectives

Police sources told Southern City News that the rescue of the kidnap victim, who had been reunited with his family, was made possible through information given to the police by some residents of the area, where he was held hostage.

The suspect, a 28-year-old man, who claimed to be working as a labourer at the Timber market in Umuahia, has confessed to the crime.

He said his friend identified only as Sunday was the person that introduced him to the six-man kidnap gang, adding that their last operation was the first time he was partaking in the crime.

Ikechuchkwu said, “I moved into Sunday’s apartment because I was finding it difficult to pay my transport fare from my village to Umuahia every day. When I complained to him, he asked me to come over to his house. I travel to my village to see my wife and daughter every weekend.

“After staying with Sunday for some time, he introduced me to some of his friends and told me that there was another business they do and if I was interested, I could join them. That was how I joined the gang.”

He identified the other members of the gang as Ogboni, Bad Dog, Moses and another boy also known as Sunday.

The suspect said it was one elderly man who he could not identify that gave them information that the medical doctor could pay ransom if they could kidnap him.

He said, “One man that we call Papa was the one giving us information about the doctor. The doctor and Papa are neighbours.

“On Monday, Sunday and the others went after the doctor. They kidnapped him and brought him to our house. I didn’t join them to kidnap him, but I was asked to look after him in the house.”

The suspect confessed that they had contacted the doctor’s wife and asked her to bring the sum of N50m as ransom before luck ran out on them.

“We called the doctor’s wife and asked her to bring N50m before we could release her husband, but she said she could only afford N400,000. We told her that the least we could take was N20m.

“But on Thursday, our landlord’s relations came to our compound and while they were moving round the house, they saw me and the doctor in the room and raised the alarm. Before the police could come, the other people had run away. That was how I was arrested,” he said.

The state police commissioner, however, hailed those who alerted the police for their patriotic act.

He said if members of the public could continue to volunteer information to the police concerning suspicious movement around them on time, it would help the police in their fight against crimes in the state.

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