SSS arrests eight Delta suspected kidnappers, blackmailers

Five suspects, including a 20-year-old woman, have been arrested by the Delta Command of the State Security Service in connection with two kidnap cases.

The command also arrested three other suspects, including two brothers, for allegedly blackmailing a director in the Petroleum Training Institute, Effurun, Delta State with a fake pornographic photograph of him.

Parading the suspects in Asaba on Thursday, the state Director of SSS, Mrs. Florence Ikanone, said the woman and four others, kidnapped one Sunday Elueni on April 13.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, Ikanone said the incident, which took place in a village near Ozoro, in Isoko North Local Government Area of Delta, was masterminded by the woman, who was a mistress to the victim.

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She said the gang collected N800,000 ransom, which was shared among them.

The woman told newsmen later that she received N100,000 from the ransom, while her accomplices received between N80,000 and N95,000 each.

Ikanone said the others were arrested for sending threat messages to Mr. David Ighovojah, Senior Special Assistant to the Deputy Governor of Delta.

She said the duo demanded “with menace”, the sum of N7m from Ighovojah to save him from being kidnapped, and also designed, printed and superimposed pornographic pictures of the director.

The SSS director added that the suspects sent threat messages to the man to pay some money to them so as to stop the pictures from being made public.

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She said all the suspects would be charged to court soon.

Meanwhile, the police in Anambra State on Thursday said they had yet to have any contact with the kidnappers of Eze Robert Eze, the traditional ruler of Ukpo, Anambra State.

The Anambra State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Raphael Uzoigwe, told our correspondent in Awka that the police were intensifying efforts to get a breakthrough on the matter.

Uzoigwe dismissed reports that the police were negotiating with the kidnappers. “There is no truth in any report like that. We do not negotiate with criminals. We are not part of it,” he said.

Eze was kidnapped in his palace at Ukpo on Sunday by five gunmen shortly after he returned from church.

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Family sources said on Wednesday that the kidnappers had made contact with the family and that they were demanding a ransom of N100m, to be paid in dollars, for the release of the traditional ruler.

But the PPRO said the family had not informed the police if they had made contact with the kidnappers.

Eze is an elder brother of billionaire oil investor and former government contractor, Mr. Arthur Eze.

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