Operatives of the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the Lagos State police command have arrested one Ataghar Namdoo, aged 26, for allegedly faking her own kidnap to extort money from her employer.
It was gathered that on January 9, at about 5:30p.m. the suspect conspired with her boyfriend, Emmanuel Idu, and Okpe David, who claimed to be a military personnel, to produce a short video of her being blindfolded and driven to a bush in a truck.
DSP Bala Elkana, Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Lagos command, in a statement yesterday, said on January 16, at about 10:00p.m., operatives from the Anti Kidnapping Unit arrested Ataghar.
In the second video, the girl, a mother of one, was seen in a bush at Sangotedo area of Ajah threatened by a man wearing a mask and holding a jack knife. Police later identified the masked man as Emmanuel Idu, who is the boyfriend of the girl. The abductors had demanded N10 million.
“The two videos were sent to the employer of the lady with a threat to kill her and to also go after the family of the employer if the ransom is not paid”, the statement said.
Frightened by the threat contained in the video and the follow-up calls, the employer, who is into fleet business, reported the case to the police.On receipt of the case, the Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Odumosu, ordered the Anti kidnapping unit to carry out an in-depth investigation into the case.
Police say the videos were thoroughly analysed alongside other vital leads. The statement added: “A well-coordinated operation was put in place, which led to the successful rescue of the self-arranged victim of the abduction and the arrest of one of the two suspects, Okpe David.
“The Command has taken steps to verify the claim by David that he is a military personnel. Police have equally launched a manhunt for the second male suspect, Idu, who has gone into hiding. David confessed to have provided the truck used.“The truck was actually driven by him. He also did the video recordings sent to the employer of the lady.
The three suspects all came from Benue State. They have known each other for so many years. Both the lady and the man arrested confessed to the commission of the crime, that their aim was to extort money from the girl’s employer, which they intended to share among themselves.
“It is worthy to note that it is a criminal offence for anyone to fake his or her kidnap. Under the Lagos State laws, the offender upon conviction is liable to 14 years imprisonment. The suspects will be charged to court,” Elkana noted.