Police nab four fake soldiers, recover ammunition in Lagos

Police nab four fake soldiers, recover ammunition in Lagos

The Lagos State Police Command has arrested four persons for allegedly parading themselves as army officers at Aina Street, Oshodi and other parts of Lagos on February 19, 2024.

PUNCH Metro exclusively gathered on Wednesday from a police source that the quartet of Ben Okafor, Darlington Iheanacho, Jonathan Yahaya, and Mohammed Umar were nabbed following sting operations across the state.

Our correspondent learnt from the source that Okafor and Iheanacho were apprehended on Monday at about 10:30pm at Aina Street.

The source told our correspondent that Okafor, who had claimed to be a corporal in the Nigerian Army, was caught with a jackknife alongside Iheanacho during a scuffle with another man identified simply as Oludotun.

Although the police had yet to ascertain the extent of Oludotun’s involvement in the alleged crime, he was suspected to be an accomplice of the duo.

After some policemen who arrived at the scene searched the two suspects, when their identities became doubtful, a fake Nigerian Army identity card bearing Corporal Geoffrey Emmanuel with serial number 140861, a jackknife, and pepper spray were said to have been recovered from them.

The police source said, “Okafor, who claimed to be a Corporal in the Nigerian Army, was seen with a jack knife alongside one Darlington Chidebere Iheanacho fighting one Oludotun. The latter reported that the soldier was chasing him with a jack knife and threatened to kill him.

“After the suspects were arrested and searched, a fake Nigerian Army identity card bearing CPL Geoffrey Emmanuel with serial no. 140861, a jack knife, and pepper spray were recovered from them.”

In a similar development just a few hours apart, Yahaya and Umar were also arrested for allegedly wearing black combat boots and camouflage trousers from the Nigerian Army uniforms.

Upon interrogation, however, PUNCH Metro learnt from the source that the suspects were believed to be imposters after they had failed to disclose their real identities and how they had obtained their uniforms.

The source said, “A Major attached to 81 Division Nigerian Army Provost, Bonny Camp Lagos, took Jonathan Yahaya and Mohammed Umar to the Onikan Division after the suspects were arrested when one of them was wearing a pair of camouflage trousers and a black combat boot, while the second was wearing a Nigeria Army uniform.

“On interrogation, it was discovered that both suspects were fake soldiers; they could not ascertain how the suspects got the army uniforms, hence their apprehension.”

When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Benjamin Hundeyin, confirmed the arrest to our correspondent on Wednesday through a telephone interview.

Hundeyin stated that all the suspects would be charged to court immediately after the investigation into their crime was completed.

“The suspects will be charged to court after the investigation,” he simply stated following our correspondent’s inquiry on Wednesday.

PUNCH Metro had reported that in January, the Nasarawa State Police Command had said in a statement that the officers of the Nigerian Army arrested a fake soldier in the Awe Local Government Area of the state and handed him over to the command for interrogation.

The statement partly read, “The suspect claimed to be a soldier attached to 231 Battalion Biu, Borno State, but investigations proved otherwise. The criminal defrauded unsuspecting members of the public under the pretext of securing employment in the Nigerian Army.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect attempted to join the military but couldn’t; thus, he went to the military barracks to purchase the uniform he is using for his nefarious activities.”

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