The four suspects who were arrested during a failed heist at a commercial bank in Mpape area of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, have revealed how they perfected their plans in six days.
An attempt by the suspects to rob the bank on Saturday, December 28 was foiled by a combined team of the Police, the Army and the Department of State Security (DSS) who arrived in the area just when the robbers had made their way in.
They were paraded on Tuesday at the Headquarters of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Police Command.
One of the suspects, Prince Obinna who is a professional photographer, narrated how he was brought into the deal by a bartender who works at a pub.
He alleged that the bartender, one Mr. Ernest who is still at large, asked him to organise his friends who are interested in the heist.
“On December 22, one Mr Ernest who works as a bartender came to me and told me that there is a job somewhere for us to do and he will connect us to the person who works at the bank.
“So he called me and said that Mr Larry Ehizo (bank staff) has arrived and I went to him, he now told us about a deal he wants us to take care of and it won’t make us less than 10-15 minutes; I asked what kind of deal, he said it’s a ‘bank work’ and their bank doesn’t operate on a Saturday, but if we can manage to come around, he can manage to help us get the money out of there because he and Ernest have worked out things.
“He asked if I can organise some people that will help the team, so I called my friends and they said they were interested.”
Obinna said the meeting was rescheduled and Larry told them everything they needed to know.
On Thursday, they had another meeting where they sat down and made the final plans together.
He said that on Friday, they organised themselves, the arms and ammunition were provided and they mobilised on Saturday to do the job.
He explained that the fifth accomplice (Patrick) who died as a result of gunshot wounds provided the guns on Friday night and they detailed him to stand by the gate because of his height and stature.
Obinna revealed that he had only known his accomplices less than two months prior to the failed heist in December.
The bank’s staff, Ehizo, who allegedly led the robbers to the bank, said he was threatened by the same Mr. Ernest who he said, masterminded the heist.
He also gave his own side of the story, stressing that his life and that of his families were threatened if he failed to heed to the plan.
Mr. Ehizo said he worked with the bank for two years as a customer service officer, and he met Mr. Ernest who is a customer at the bank at a pub where he usually goes to have a bottle of beer.
“I have been working with the bank for over two years; the same Ernest that met them had met me earlier with a lot of threat based on a discussion we had sometime in November which he said he recorded and was going to use against me if I don’t cooperate, I tried to report to the police but he told me that if I do so, his friends will hurt me if he is arrested.
“I took them in, which was the instruction that was given by the said Ernest; he insisted I had a meeting with them and he said that I should bring them in and they will take over from there.”
Mr Ehizo stated that “I have not worked with Ernest, he is a customer in the bank and that was where we got to know because I work in the customer service department and I treat request.
“There is a place I went to drink beer and that is where he works. We were having a conversation about work and all and he was complaining that certain request will be brought to the bank and they don’t treat early and why haven’t we improved our services. So I tried to explain to him that this process takes a long time and it is not the way they look. He now said that it’s not an excuse, maybe these banks need to start touching them.
“I now asked him if he wants to go and rob the bank or get some people to do it or even kill someone to make an impression and that is not the way to go about it; he had this on record that day and after like three weeks, he called me and said that he had gotten people. I begged him that I didn’t tell him I want to rob the bank or he should bring people and he should let the matter be.
“He now came to my house with his friends and threatened me, he described my family house and said that he had traced me to my family house and anything I will do; I should take the outcome like that.
“I was afraid to come to the police because I didn’t know what he was going to do with my family or any other person around me.”
On the day of the robbery, Mr Ehizo alleged that Mr Ernest was opposite the bank, watching their moves from the point they arrived at the bank.
“At the pre-operation meeting, he told me to tell them how to go inside, take them in, show them where the CCTV camera is, where the police officer will be; he even came along that day, but he didn’t come in the same car, he stayed across the bank.
“When we drove in, he called and told me that he just saw us enter and hope it is what we discussed that I am doing, out of fear I told him yes. He said that I should just do as we have agreed. I drove them to the bank as the person instructed me to do.”
Police in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have killed one and arrested four suspects who attempted to rob a first generation bank in the Mpape, a satellite town of Abuja.
The robbers, who broke into the bank around 10 am on Saturday, met resistance from the Police, Army and the Department of State Security, who cordoned the place minutes after responding to a distress call.
“I am proud of the proactiveness of the Nigerian Army and Police in foiling the bank robbery in Abuja,” he said in a tweet.
The former Vice President added, “It is my hope that this will be the face of a reinvigorated security in the new year.”
His tweet came hours after a group of armed men attacked the commercial bank located at Mpape, a satellite town in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The suspects were said to have gained entry into the banking hall after shooting sporadically into the air to scare people away.
Their hope of successful and well-planned operation was, however, dashed as they came to the end of the road after they were trapped inside the bank.
This was as a result of the prompt response by security operatives made up of men of the Nigeria Police Forces, Nigerian Army, and the Department of State Services (DSS) who positioned themselves strategically in the area.
An exchange of gunfire between the suspects and the security personnel ensued thereafter, resulting in the death of one of the attackers while four others were arrested.
La Casa De Papel (Money heist) Season 4 is currently being produced at Mpape, Abuja right now! The robbers have refused to come out of the one way in one way out bank. As the police officers are trying to force their way in. What should the robbers do? Surrender or Shoot out? pic.twitter.com/6slrCiH89V
Nigerians are grateful to the Nigeria Policemen who risked their lives to foil this Money Heist at Mpape. We have seen cases where bank workers and bank customers get killed during operation. Apart from a robber that was shot dead,and the other four arrested, everyone is fine. pic.twitter.com/FYbsWoEQjP
Twelve people — including six hostages — were killed in northeast Brazil on Friday after police foiled a gang of armed robbers staging simultaneous predawn assaults on two banks in the town of Milagres, officials said.
Five of the dead hostages were members of the same family and included two children, the local mayor, Lielson Landim, told the Folha de Sao Paulo newspaper. They had been returning from a nearby airport when some of the robbers seized them.
The secretary for security in the state of Ceara, Andre Costa, said in a statement that an investigation was being carried out to identify those killed and the circumstances of their deaths.
Costa did not say whose bullets killed the hostages. Landim had earlier said that, based on initial information, he understood that “the criminals killed the hostages and the police killed the criminals.”
Two suspects were arrested, according to Costa’s office.
“A heavily armed group arrived in the town in the early hours and went to the centre where they tried to commit the crime. There was an exchange of fire between the suspects and police,” it said.
It said six gang members were killed and “another six people died from gunshots.”
Various weapons and explosives, as well as three vehicles used in the bank assaults, were recovered.
– ‘Cowering’ residents –
The gang had launched simultaneous assaults on two banks on the same street in Milagres — population 28,000 — shortly after 2:00 am (0400 GMT).
According to the G1 news website, the robbers had blocked a street with a truck and stopped the car carrying the family, which included relatives who had just arrived on a flight from Sao Paulo to celebrate Christmas with them.
G1 reported that the robbers “executed” the hostages when police turned up. It said some of the gang managed to escape.
“I’ve never seen anything like it. I stayed inside my home, cowering and afraid,” a local resident, Mendonca de Santa Helena, told media. “I heard people yelling and crying. It was horrible.”
Shaken by the violence, the municipality of Milagres suspended most of its activities on Friday and asked residents to stay at home “until order is restored.”
Brazil is one of the most violent countries in the world, suffering nearly 64,000 murders last year — a homicide rate of 30.8 per 100,000 inhabitants that is three times higher than the level the United Nations considers to be endemic violence.
On January 1, a far-right politician promising a relentless crackdown on crime, Jair Bolsonaro, will become Brazil’s new president following his election in October.
The Police have arrested two out of the four suspected leaders of the criminal gang that carried out the deadly Offa bank robbery.
Kunle Ogunleye aka Arrow, 35, and Michael Adikwu were arrested at separate locations in Kwara State where they allegedly carried out the robbery on April 5, leaving many dead and shocking the nation.
They were among the four men the police declared wanted on May 4, after labelling them the principal suspects in the robbery.
The Police Force Public Relations Officer Jimoh Moshood said in a statement on Monday that Ogunleye was arrested on Sunday in Oro Town, while Adikwu was arrested two weeks ago.
Both men were arrested by the Joint Investigation Team.
According to the statement, Adikwu, a native of Apa LGA in Benue State, is a dismissed police corporal and an ex-convict.
He was arrested, tried and dismissed from the Force and charged to court by the Police in 2012 in Kwara State for criminal conspiracy and aiding the escape from lawful custody of armed robbery suspects, the statement said.
He was subsequently jailed and spent three years in prison before finding his way out in 2015, the police added.
After Adikwu regained his freedom, the statement said “he became a vicious and notorious gang leader of armed robbery syndicate wanted for several armed robberies in Kwara and other states of the North Central and South West”.
“The two suspects have confessed to the crime and admitted to the various criminal roles they played in the Offa banks robbery. They will be charged to court on completion of the investigation,” the police said.
Their arrest brings to 22 the number of suspects the police have arrested in connection with the bank robbery.
The police thanked the public for their support in the arrest of suspects and called for information that can lead to the arrest of the remaining suspects.
Also, the police promised to protect and reward informants while also recalling the N5 million reward the Kwara State government promised anyone with information that leads to the arrest of the suspects.
Two people have been killed following a bank robbery incident which occurred in a community in Ekiti State on Tuesday.
The incident comes barely one month after a similar occurence claimed the life of a police officer in Ifaki Ekiti.
Among the deceased were a police officer and a bank official who were reportedly shot dead when the robbers invaded the bank beside the palace of the town’s monarch, minutes after a cash conveying bullion van came in.
The robbers were said to have also shot at some official cars of the bank after which one of the cars went up in flames.
Speaking to journalists, the monarch, Oba Ajibade Alabi and the Chairman of the Local Government, Olanrewaju Omolase, both expressed displeasure over the incident, describing it as a sad mystery which must be unravelled.
Security agents have, however, begun investigating the incident but attempts to speak with the Deputy Commissioner of Police was rebuffed.