Two drivers, Emmanuel Okomeyin, 27, and Anyia Austine, 30, have been arraigned before an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court for allegedly attempting to kidnap their employer’s wife. The accused, whose residential addresses were not provided, are facing two counts of conspiracy and attempted kidnap. According to the police prosecutor, Michael Unah, the accused allegedly attempted to kidnap their employer’s wife, Mrs Ijeoma Ezeokafor, from her residence. Unah said the accused committed the offences on October 26, 2018, around 1pm at 1A Dora Crescent, Ajah, Lagos. He added that the duo conspired to kidnap Ijeoma with the hope of collecting the sum of N20m as ransom from her husband.
Unah stated, “The police got the information from an undisclosed source that the accused were planning to kidnap their employer’s wife at her residence in order to collect N20m ransom from her husband. “A team of policemen went to the residence of the complainant and let the cat out of the bag and the accused were handed over to the police.” The charges read, “That you, Emmanuel Okomeyin and Anyia Austine, on October 26, 2018, around 1pm in Ajah, Lagos, in the Lagos Magisterial District, did conspire among yourselves to commit felony to wit; kidnapping, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015. “That you, Emmanuel Okomeyin and Anyia Austine, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district, did attempt to kidnap one Ijeoma Ezeokafor, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 406 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.” The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The presiding magistrate, Mr A. A. Fashola, granted the accused bail in the sum of N500,000 with two responsible sureties each in like sum. Fashola said the sureties must be gainfully employed with evidence of two years tax payment to the Lagos State Government and have their addresses verified by the court. In addition, he said the sureties must be blood relations of the accused and also reside within the court’s jurisdiction. The magistrate adjourned the case till February 25, 2019, for mention.
In November, police men in Lagos state have apprehended two suspected kidnappers who planned to abduct their employer’s wife. It was gatthered that the suspects – Austine Anya and Emmanuel Okemayin were employed as private drivers to the family of Mrs. Ijeoma Eze-Okafor, but they didn’t know they were employing kidnappers.
The two drivers were said to have arranged with some of their gang members to kidnap Mrs. Ijeoma for ransom but they were unfortunate as they were caught in the act by divine intervention. It was gathered that the suspects contacted one Awosola Adewale, gave him money to contact a native doctor and source for the arms for the operation while they still worked in the house as drivers in order to perfect the wicked act.
However, while they were planning, they contacted some people for the supply of arms and an operational vehicle unknown to them it was the operatives of FSARS they contacted and they were eventually arrested on the day of the operation. This was confirmed by the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Imohimi Edgal and the three suspects were paraded at the State Command on Monday.
CP Edgal explained that the police received credible information that some kidnappers had concluded arrangements to kidnap a renowned businesswoman, Mrs. Ijeoma Eze- Okafor.
The police boss said that directives were given to the FSARS operatives to infiltrate the camp and play along with them. He said the suspects requested for arms, ammunition and vehicle for the operation while the suspects on their own sent the photograph of the target, details of her vehicle and other information to their new partners not knowing they were dealing with policemen.
CP Edgal said that it took 10 days for the gang to plan and on the day they had planned to execute their plan they were immediately arrested. He said that during interrogation, it was discovered that the two drivers were employed to drive the target and her husband respectively while the third suspect was given N10,000 to engage the services of a native doctor that will protect them after the operation. The suspects confessed and claimed that they had planned to kidnap the target because she was wicked to them. Mr. Edgal said that the suspects will be charged to court after the conclusion of investigations.
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