Pa Basil Agha, 69, a Lagos-based Oil and Gas dealer and father of four who spent all his youthful days training his children ended up being kidnapped a year ago by a deadly criminal gang that had been terrorising Anambra, Imo, Rivers, Bayelsa and Lagos states for long. Shockingly, one of his cousins was alleged to have masterminded his abduction in conjunction with a dreaded gang made up of criminals from their area. The gang later killed and buried him in a shallow grave surrounded by shrines in his maternal home, Eziukwu, Ihioma in Orlu, Imo state, after collecting ransom of N5million from members of his family. That was after one of the gang memhers claimed that the victim identified him.
Police swings into action
Luckily, just few days before one year anniversary of his kidnap, the bubble burst. Detectives attached to the Inspector-General of Police Intelligence Response Squad, IRS, led by ACP Abba Kyari, in conjunction with an Intelligence agency, recorded a breakthrough. They succeeded in arresting one of the kingpins notoriously called ‘Master ‘who confessed to the crime and led detectives to where they buried the man in a shallow grave and his eyes tied with a string.
Detectives later arrested three other suspected members of the gang and their startling confessions led to the discreet interrogation of the father of the suspected leader of the gang called Onyebuchi, who opened up lamenting that he had long expected police to have killed his son because of his criminal activities.
Exploits of a vicious gangster
Crime Guard gathered that the gang was led by Onyebuchi who was also known by many other names like Bennett etc. He was said to be based in Onitsha, Anambra state but operated in Imo, Port-Harcourt, Bayelsa and even Lagos states. Police sources said the gang had a very beautiful lady who usually made hotel reservations for members of the gang with fake names before carrying out their operations. Interestingly, all the members were said to be on oath forbidding any disclosure with death as penalty.
Lamentations of gangster’s father
Reports said detectives, through intelligence gathering discovered that around July this year, Onyebuchi was arrested by a team of policemen from SARS at a location in Imo state but he gave a different name and claimed to be based in Ghana. Chika, his second in command, reportedly was going round trying to raise funds towards setting his boss free and even went to Onyebuchi’s father but he met a brick wall as he refused to help stating that he had long disowned him as a son. According to sources, his father further told Chika that when his son, Onyebuchi, was involved in a robbery case at Asaba some years ago, he thought the police should have killed him so as to stop the shame he was bringing to the family but they freed him. The father was also said to have reported his son to the community and their king with a view to avoiding the demolition of his house if he was caught in his kidnapping exploits. He also warned Chika to stop coming to him for any help.
How we abducted victim
Crime Guard learned that when detectives succeeded in arresting Chika, he confessed to the exploits of the notorious gang led by Onyebuchi and also disclosed that Onyebuchi gave his name as Ugochukwu Okafor based in Ghana, after he was arrested. He stated that they used different names whenever they were arrested because their real names were in police crime records. Chika was further said to have given vivid details about the abduction and killing of Pa Basil Agha and how he was recruited for the job. He said he was on the verge of leaving the gang when Onyebuchi invited him for the operation but he did not tell him that it was kidnapping but, rather, they were going to abduct a man coming from Lagos who was owing him a huge sum of money. Chika reportedly disclosed also that Onyebuchi told them to act like policemen. After carrying out the job and brought the man to Onyebuchi, he later gave him N200, 000. He then took detectives to where he buried the locally made gun used for the operation.
Police sources disclosed also that during interrogation it was discovered that Chika was cleverly avoiding giving details about the innermost working of the gang fuelling suspicion that members of the gang must have taken an oath not to reveal their secret. Crime Guard gathered that after concerted efforts to make him name members of the gang, he reluctantly agreed but still complained about the oath. It was however learned that on the day he was brought out to fully disclose the identities of members of the gang, he allegedly slumped and died, to the bewilderment of police officers in Orlu station, after uttering just one name.
On the second group led by Ikenna who is presently in the cell, he allegedly gave spiritual power and prepared charm which the gang used for robbery and kidnapping. His charms were said to be so effective that whenever police arrested any member of the gang, he had a way of setting him free. He also allegedly used charm to assist drug peddlers both locally and internationally. Sources said that police also succeeded in arresting a prominent member of his gang who turned out to be a pastor at Akata in Imo state. The Pastor reportedly confessed and narrated how they operated using one Sabbath Church as a cover. He also disclosed that members of the gang quarrelled over the sharing of ransom collected from Pa Agha’s family members before some of them were arrested. According to sources, after he was arrested, he said that the name of his church was Alpha and Omega and that he started as a good pastor by helping people to run their churches and assisting Ikenna whom they believed possessed great spiritual powers. Unfortunately, he said each time he tried to establish his own church, he would not succeed and that was what led him to Ikenna at Amagu. He said they now had an agreement that he had to bring other pastors to join their cult group in order to get spiritual powers and that he ended up initiating about four pastors from Anambra and Enugu states.
He later fled to Nsukka in Enugu state where he opened his church called Alpha and Omega Ministry. claiming that he was using the power given to him by Ikenna to heal people. He also stated that whenever the power failed him, he would sneak into their community to get more powers. The Pastor reportedly told detectives that the gang was capable of smashing any police station that stood on their way and they had been terrorizing policemen in and around Imo state for long. So far, three of the suspects are still in police cell while both Onyebuchi and Chika were suspected to have died in police cell.
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