Looting: 409 held in Abuja, Ilorin, Ondo, other states

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Residents looting a warehouse in Plateau state adamawa
Residents looting a warehouse in Plateau state

More arrests were made on Monday as security agencies intensified manhunt for those who looted palliative items and raided private homes to cart away valuables.

No fewer than 409 suspects have been arrested in Abuja, Kwara, Plateau and Benue states.

Police in Plateau State arrested additional 174 people to raise the number of suspects in the net to 307 in the state.

In Calabar where 80 suspects were apprehended, Governor Ben Ayade announced a N100,000 bounty for whoever offers a useful information that will lead to more arrests.

Many looted items were abandoned at various street corners by fleeing looters as police intensified the house-to-house search directed by the government.

Cross River Commissioner of Police Abdulkadir Jimoh said many looted items had been recovered.

The items included tricycles and stage and sound equipment from Calabar International Conference Centre (CICC).

He urged the traditional institutions, community leaders, faith groups, youths as well as community policing committees to expose looters.

Abuja residents invading a COVID-19 warehouse before looting it
Abuja residents invading a COVID-19 warehouse before looting it. Three women died in the process

“We have arrested over 80 suspects and they are under going interrogation in various security facilities. Looters have 24 hours to return all looted items before the house-to-house search gets to them as recovery of looted items is on going.

He warned landlords, parents, community and religious leaders not to hide or cover up for any criminal in thier environment, adding that the house-to-house search which was in effect was not business as usual .

The Police commissioner said police had also recovered four new tricycles, water heaters, bath tubs, air conditioners, musical speakers, executive chairs among other items mostly suspected to be stolen from the Campaign office of House of Representatives member Etta Mbora.

Other items include stage equipment at the CICC, sewing machines from garment factory, fumigating equipment, cartons of pesticides and so on.

Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to the Governor, Christian Ita, said in a statement in Calabar that whistle blowers should call 08034500531 to give such information.

In Kwara State, the police paraded 144 persons in connection with last week violent attack and looting of public and private property in Ilorin, the state capital.

The hoodlums attacked government warehouses, office of the Nigeria Customs Service Command, Shoprite Mall and others. They also attacked and molested motorists and residents within the the metropolis.

Nigerian soldiers condone a street to restore normalcy
Nigerian soldiers condone a street to restore normalcy

Commissioner of Police, Kayode Egbetokun said the arrest of the suspects was as a result of combined efforts of security agencies.

He called on those who still have looted property in their possession to voluntarily surrender them, adding that such people would not be prosecuted.

The police chief said looted property could be submitted at various religious centres like mosques, churches and even residences of community heads.

Also, Ondo State Police Command has launched a manhunt for robbers and looters of shops in Akure, the state capital, and other parts of the state.

No fewer than 10 persons have been arrested in different parts of the state.

In some areas, it was gathered that house-to-house search was conducted to recover looted goods.

It was also learnt that a dealer in electrical parts was shot dead on Sunday evening at his shop located at Sijuade area of Akure. The identity of the victim was not disclosed.

Police spokesman, ASP Tee-Leo Ikoro, confirmed the arrest of 10 for looting shops and armed robbery.

Ikoro explained that those arrested were not EndSARS protesters but looters.

He said the operation was still on to arrest other fleeing shop looters.

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Police Command arrested 51 suspected looters in Abuja.

Items recoverd from them at the Jabi-Daki-biu, Industrial Estate and Karimo axis were 54 bags of rice, clothes, oil and tomato pastes among others.

FCT Commissioner of Police Bala Ciroma, who briefed reporters while parading the suspects, said in compliance with the directives of the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, the command has deployed tactical strategies such as diligent motorised and foot patrols to avert further breakdown of law and order.

Ciroma said his command had begun investigation into the death of three people during the stampede in Gwagwalada.

He said those arrested will be charged to court as soon as possible.

The commissioner appealed to residents to remain law-abiding and calm.

Ciroma said: “In the bid to ensure the protection of lives and property within the FCT, the command has arrested Fifty-one (51) suspected looters and made recoveries of some looted items at Jabi-Daki-biu, Idu Industrial Estate and Karimo axis, following the wanton looting cum vandalism of public and private warehouses with these area by some hoodlums.”

Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister Muhammad Bello ordered the arrest and prosecution of the people who broke into the FCT warehouse in Gwagwalada Area Council and looted food items.

Bello gave the order during an emergency security meeting with leaders of various security agencies in the city, on Monday in Abuja.

The minister, who asked those who looted the food items to return them immediately, said there would be massive deployments of security agencies to saveguard factories and warehouses at Idu industrial area.

Bello said what was ongoing was no longer #EndSARS protest, but broad-day light stealing by hoodlums.

In Kaduna, the police arrested 25 suspects for looting COVID-19 palliatives at various warehouses within the State capital.

The hoodlums vandalised the Zonal Office, laboratory and training centre of the National Agency for Foods, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), where they carted away sample and siezed drugs and foods, as well as office furniture, electronics and equipment.

The arrested suspects, who were immediately charged to the Chief Magistrate Court yesterday, included a woman.

The Police Command’s Public Relations Officer, (PPRO), ASP Muhammed Jalige, said items recovered from the suspects include; bags of mosquito coil, air condition sets, 29 grains, bags of fertilizer, microwave machine, burglary irons, two bags of sugar, three bags of soya beans, two cartons of cough syrup, aluminum window panels, mobile telephones and roofing sheets, among others.

Vehicles, motorcycle, tricycles, which were used to convey the looted items, were also recovered from the suspects.