Two suspected kidnappers have confessed that they demanded one AK-47 and 12 general purpose machine guns as ransom for the release of their victim, Mrs. Chinyere Olumma, the Rivers State Police Command said on Tuesday.
Mrs. Olumma was rescued on Friday, May 22.
The suspects, according to the Rivers Police spokesperson, Mr. Ahmad Mohammad, had given the family of the victim an option of paying a ransom of N50m or providing one AK-47 and 12 general purpose machine guns before their victim would be released.
Mohammad, who made this disclosure yesterday during a press briefing, added that the suspects had initially collected the sum of N1m from Olumma’s family for the upkeep of their victim.
They were, however, rounded up by the police in Abua as they shared the N1m upkeep money sent to them.
“It was sometime around 1am in the morning, they kidnapped one woman by the name Mrs. Chinyere Oluma from Erema in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area. They kidnapped her and then made contact with the family of the victim.
“They demanded N50m with an option of providing one AK-47 rifle and 12 RPMG, that is General Purpose Machine Gun. The kidnappers called the family of the victim to give them N1m for the upkeep of the victim and themselves. The N1m you see with them is the money they demanded for the upkeep of the victim and themselves. So, this money you are seeing is the N1m that was given to them. They (kidnappers) did not know we were tracking them after they received the N1m.
“So, we tracked and caught them at Abua. When our men got there, they were four and they were with the money before they were arrested. You can see the charms we recovered from them. On their way coming from their hideout, their colleague from behind opened fire on our men. Our men injured one of the hoodlums, who later died in a hospital and then, one of them escaped. The two we have here could not escape and out of the pressure mounted on them, they took our men to where they kept the woman (their victim) inside the bush near Egbeda”, the police spokesman said.
Apart from the cash sum of N1m recovered from them, a rope used in tying their victim to a tree was also recovered from the suspected kidnappers.
In a twist of events, one of the suspects identified as Solomon Obigwe, said he never knew that his friend (Christian Enwe) was a kidnapper and that he was unfortunate to be with him (Enwe) and his friends at the time the police stormed their hideout.
Obigwe, who was silent on the confession he made to the police, pleaded for forgiveness and promised to turn a new leaf.
“I was there when he (Christian Enwe) came in with his friends with his bag. As he came, he told me as a younger brother that we should go to my house. When we got there, I asked how manage they got such money. They told me they kidnapped somebody and the person paid them this money.
“We argued over their action. I have never kidnapped before and I have never had that in mind since I was born. I was arguing about how they got such amount of money when police came and arrested four of us”, Obigwe said.