CRIME: Nigerian Police Busts Kidnappers’ Spiritual Home
The escape of a Nigerian female kidnap victim from the kidnappers’ den has led to the discovery of a shrine where inter-state kidnappers and armed robbers take their victims to hypnotize.
The shrine which is located in a forest in Oduke, a neighborhood of Okwe community in Asaba, capital of Delta state, is presided over by a fake prophet and his wife, also suspected to be members of the kidnapping/armed robbery syndicate.
Armed robbery and kidnap victims taken there are forced to drink concoctions to hypnotize them. But the concoction also gives health complications.
The escape of Mrs. Ojukwu from the shrine however blew the lid open, after she was dispossessed of her property including cash. She promptly reported the incident to the police.
It was gathered that the gang usually entrapped unsuspecting passengers in a vehicle occupied by the gang members with the driver of the cab pretending to be a commercial transporter.
The Delta kidnapping gang
Mrs. Ojukwu who claimed to be a trader in jewelries, said she was going to Nnewi, in the neighboring state of Anambra on the fateful day when she ran into the hoodlums along the Onitsha-Owerri expressway in Anambra state.
According to her, she had flagged down a taxi occupied by the driver and three passengers including a man and two women and told the driver that she was going to Nnewi.
She claimed that the driver reversed the vehicle and headed towards the River Niger Bridge, instead of going to Nnewi, following which she said they threatened to shoot her if she raised alarm. A gun was pointed on her head.
According to her, she was initially taken to the operational base of the hoodlums in Oduke area of Asaba before she was taken to the shrine which had the paraphernalia of a Christian worship centre.
Mrs. Ojukwu said the prophet in-charge of the shrine forced her to drink concoction which made her to be unconscious, adding that as at the time regained consciousness, her N.6 million and gold jewelries valued at N1.8 million were gone.
Meanwhile, Mrs. Ojukwu has taken ill, following a strange ailment she incurred after allegedly drinking the concoction at the shrine.
“I have gone to several hospitals to seek solution to this ailment that is making me to cough to no avail,” she said, adding doctors were yet to diagnose the strange ailment for possible remedy.
Delta state police command Public Relations Officer, ASP Lucky Uyabeme, who confirmed the report, said some of the suspects have been arrested from their hide out.
He said the woman was rushed to a hospital where doctors confirmed that she was suffering as a result of the concoction she drank, adding that the victim was still undergoing medical examination.
According to the police spokesman Uyabeme, the prophet who forcefully administered the concoction on the victim scaled the fence when he sighted the police and had since gone underground.
Delta State once earned the notoriety of being the base of kidnappers in Nigeria.