January 23, (THEWILL) – The eight suspects arrested over the abduction of 20 travellers at the Igueben train station in Edo State, plotted the kidnapping in the hope of receiving a ransom of N20 million to free their hostages, Edo State Police Command has alleged in a two-count charge filed against the suspects.
THEWILL reported that gunmen had on Saturday, 8th January, 2023, attacked the Igueben train station and abducted 20 people including two workers in the station.
While all the victims have been rescued, the State Government had in a statement said 8 suspects including two chiefs were arrested in connection to the incident.
However, in an update on the development on Sunday, Spokesperson of the State Police Command, SP Chidi Nwabuzor, said charges have been filed against the suspects, who are currently in its custody.
According to a copy of the pleadings seen by THEWILL, the police said the suspects contravened Section 5 and punishable under Section 2 (1) (2) of the Kidnapping Prohibition (Amendment) Law of Edo State, 2013.
Signed by Barr. I. E. Ekibade on behalf of the legal section of the Edo State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (SCIID), the charge alleged that the suspect (all males), conspired within themselves to “commit felony by wit.”
Police alleged that the eight suspects identified as Odion, 62, Ewa, 58, Patrick, 42, Ighedujiemu, 51, Hamilton, 59, Umaru, 28, Ibrahim, 25, and Aliyu, 25, conspired to kidnap the victims with the expectation of getting N20 million from their relatives as ransom for their freedom.
“The State Commissioner of Police, who is the complainant in the case filed and prayed the court to serve justice to the eight suspects because they have committed an offence punishable under the Kidnapping Prohibition (Amendment) Law of the state,” said the State Police image maker.
Nwabuzor, however, said the trial of the suspects has not begun contrary to some media reports.
He said the “Exparte Order” filed earlier was to enable Police investigators to extend the detention of the suspect for a period of 14 days, to meet with exegesis.