The Imo State Police Command has arrested a kidnapping syndicate for allegedly kidnapping two siblings from Enugu State.
It was gathered that Kingsley Ehiedu and his wife stole the children who are children of his neighbour after convincing the parents that he was taken them to Shoprite Enugu to buy a meat pie.
But the father of the children, Ossai Johnson raised alarm when they didn’t return.
A medical doctor, Innocent Onwudike of Unity Hospital, Awommama in Oru East Local Government Area of Imo State was also arrested.
According to the Special Adviser on Media to the state Commissioner of Police, Mike Abatam, the couple stole the children from their neighbour in Enugu State and brought them to the medical doctor in Imo State, whom he said had been in the business of buying and selling children for a long time.
Abatam said through inter-command collaboration, the suspects were rounded up and the children recovered and reunited with their family.
He stated, “On May 19, 2021, around 12.30am, one Mr Ossai Johnson of Ngwo by Phinomar Road in Enugu State reported a case of missing children at the police Anti-Kidnapping Unit, Enugu.
“He reported that his neighbour, one Kingsley Ehiedu, of Ngwo Step, Enugu, left with his two children of the same address for Shoprite Enugu to buy meat pie and ice cream for them.
“When it became dark and he didn’t see them, he reported to the police. After preliminary investigation, it was discovered that Kingsley Ehiedu ran away with the two children to Awomama in the Oru East LGA of Imo State. Thus, the Imo State Police Command was contacted and it swung into action.
“In the process, the suspect, Kingsley Ehiedu, was arrested and his house was searched. Recovered from him are a bag containing the sum of N200,000, one Airtel SIM card, nose mask, three different bunches of keys and six GSM phones.
“When he was interrogated, he confessed to have taken the stolen children to one Dr Innocent Onwudike of Unity Hospital, Awomama, in the Oru East LGA of lmo State. On getting there, the doctor, it was discovered, had taken the children to his brother’s wife residence in Owerri after keeping them for two weeks and bargained to pay N1m for them.
“He later took the police team to the residence of his brother’s wife in Owerri, one Mrs Ada Pricilla Oluaha, of No 27 Ngokpala Street, Owerri, Imo State, where he hid the two children. On getting there, the children were recovered, including a little girl of four years. The investigation is still in progress to arrest the other members of the syndicate.
“The Commissioner of Police, Imo State, Abutu Yaro, commended the efforts of his men and urged them to sustain the tempo. He also warned criminals, who indulge in kidnapping/trafficking in persons to leave the state.”
Ehiedu, who confessed to the crime, told journalists that somebody linked him with the medical doctor, who he said was into the business of buying and selling children.
The medical doctor, Onwudike, who also confessed to the crime, said he later refused the offer to sell the children and was keeping them in the custody of his brother’s wife before the police swooped on him and recovered them.