Operatives of the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu’s Special Intelligence Response Team (IRT), have smashed a robbery gang, which specialised in using motorcycles to trail and rob bank customers in Lagos State. At the last count, the number of those in police custody are 10, while efforts are still on to catch others.
Members of the gang claimed to have built houses from the proceeds of their crimes, and still another confessed to have given his father a befitting burial. Those currently in police custody are; Musibau Ogunbiyi, Rilwan Olarinwajo, Wahab Wasiu, Akeem Hassan, Idowu Taofiq, Sadiq Alada, Razaq Isah, Tunji Kundus, Tijani Koyim and Ibrahim Olagoke.
The downfall of the gang started after it robbed a businessman, who deals in motorcycle of N2million. The gang was alleged to have attacked the businessman in his shop at Abule-Egba area of the state, where they dispossessed him of the money.
It would be later discovered that the brain behind the attack on the businessman, was one of his regular customers. When the businessman’s shop was attacked, his phones and those of his staff were taken by the armed robbers. He petitioned the IGP, who directed IRT, headed by a Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP), Abba Kyari, to look into the matter.The police said: “Investigations showed that those behind the robbery were members of a large gang, operating on motorcycles.
The gang specialised in dispossessing bank customers of their money, moments after they had withdrawn it from banks or Automatic Machine Teller (ATM) points. It was also discovered that a member of the gang visits banks and monitor customers making huge withdrawals. He would then follow such customers.” The police further narrated: “The suspect, who has a waiting motorcycle, would trail the target and then alert his gang members. The gang members would normally wait nearby for signal.
They would dispossess the bank customer of his money at gun point. These suspects have been in this business for long and have robbed several bank customers in various parts of the state.” One of the gang members, Wahab Wasiu (28), whose job was to monitor bank customers as they leave the banking halls or ATM points, said that one Tunde lured him into armed robbery. He said that Tunde used to work with his motorcycle. Wasiu, a father of three, said that he was into Aluminium engineering.
He confessed to have joined robbery in 2017. He said: “There was a day Tunde invited me to follow him to do his business. He asked me to go to First Bank, located at Idimu and stand beside the ATM point, monitoring customers making huge withdrawals.
He said when I have a target, I should call our cyclist, Akeem Hassan, and then we should start trailing the person. “Sometimes, when I’m standing by the ATM point, monitoring customers coming out of the banks with nylon bags of money, I and my cyclist would trail the victim and rob him or her. So far, I have trailed over eight bank customers from different banks and robbed them.
I’ve built a house with the money I made from the robbery operations.” Another gang member, Musibau Ogunbiyi, alias Egwufe, said that he buried his father with his own proceeds. Ogunbiyi, who introduced himself as a mechanic, said that he used to work with Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) as a supervisor. He would later join the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW). He said that he was arrested after fighting to take over a park at Alaba International Market area of Lagos. He spent a year in prison, and was later granted bail. Ogunbiyi, who said that he was a member of the Eiye Confraternity, added: “After I was released from prison, I started looking for a job, but couldn’t get any. I met Tunde at a popular hotel in my area. He told me that he had a gun, and was looking for connection to go for any robbery operation.
Three weeks after we met, Tunde called and said he had an operation and wanted me to join him. I met him at Egbeda and we went on a motorbike that was driven by one Semo. We went to Idimu and robbed a man, who was walking along the road; we took the sum of N250, 000 from him. Tunde had someone who used to give him information about targets. I got N70, 000 as my share, while Tunde left with the rest of the money.
“A month later, three of my friends called and told me that they had information that an Igbo trader that deals on motorcycles was making huge sales daily. They said that they wanted to lead a gang to rob him.
I told them that I had no gun for the operation but they persuaded me to use my contact to get a gun. “I called Tunde and told him about the operation; he brought his guns and we all went and robbed the man. We took N2milion from him.
I got N230, 000 as my share, Tunde got N240, 000 and we gave the remaining to the informants. I buried my father with my share of the money and bought some clothes with the remainder. Before I knew it, the police came and arrested me.”
Rilwan Olarinwajo (24) alias Star boy, said: “I’m a motorcycle operator; I became an armed robber through my friend Egwufe. My first operation was at Liasu Road in Idimu. I was the person riding the motorcycle, and there was a guy called, Enny, he was inside the bank. Enny was the person that monitored the man we robbed from the bank. I don’t know the amount of money collected from him, but I was given N30,000.”
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