The Lagos State Police Command has discovered a hideout allegedly used by kidnappers and ritualists in Ijaye area of the state.
It was another round of jungle justice as two suspected kidnap suspects were burnt alive by an angry mob at the Obadeyi-Ijaiye end of the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway in Lagos State, following the discovery of a kidnapper's den in a canal in the area.
Punch reports that the discovery of the den on Tuesday, August 8, 2017, was made possible by female street sweeper who raised an alarm after she heard a woman screaming for help inside the tunnel, drawing the attention of residents who went into the canal to try and rescue the woman.
It was gathered that five persons suspected to be kidnappers and ritual killers, were accosted while trying to escape from the tunnel, which was part of a canal in the area, with two of them burnt to death while the rest were rescued by the police.
An uncompleted building was also discovered at the end of the tunnel with items like clothes, bras, female underwear, slippers, bags, among other items, with many believing the victims were either used for rituals or sexually assaulted.
The middle-aged street sweeper who gave her name as Munirat Aduke, told newsmen that said had resumed to start her daily sweeping routine when she heard the low voice of a woman calling for help from inside the gutter.
“As I peeped into the gutter to see what was amiss, I saw about four people; then, a male voice this time around asked me not to come near them.
I quickly rushed to call some policemen stationed in a bank adjacent the gutter. When the policemen came, they attempted to rescue those who were there but there was strong resistance from some of the men who were throwing stones at them."
A resident who identified himself as Bola Salaudeen, explained that as people maintained vigilance at both sides of the canal after they were alerted, one of the suspects came out around 8 am and was captured before he could escape.
“People asked him what he was doing in the canal but he insisted he would not say anything about his mission there.
They demanded to know the whereabouts of the woman calling for help but he said he would never divulge any information even if they killed him.
Despite the beating he got, he didn’t disclose any information. Some angry boys put a tyre on him and set him ablaze.
As the fire raged on, another suspect came out from the other end of the canal. He said they were about 20 in the canal. The policemen did not allow him to say more than that before they took him away.
Around 12 pm, two other persons fled from the canal. People chased and caught them. They were also rescued by the police.”
It was learned that after waiting for a long time, some members of the Oodua People’s Congress [OPC], summoned up courage and went into the canal.
Another resident said:
“They [OPC] discovered that there was a gate in the middle of covered area of the canal. They saw another suspect there. They dragged him out and a mob set him ablaze. We believe more people are still in the canal.”
Confirming the incident, the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, said the police would carry out a scientific investigation on the items recovered at the scene, adding that it was too early to say that the tunnel and the building were used for ritual or kidnapping purposes.
“At about 9 am, there was a shout from a female in distress under that tunnel. The people in the area contacted the DPO who rushed to the scene.
The DPO and the crowd removed the woman. While they were doing that, they found out that two persons were also coming out from the tunnel.
They believed those people were pursuing the woman. When the police wanted to take them into custody, the crowd surged and put fire on them. A policeman was badly injured.
Reinforcement from the Rapid Response Squad got there and trailed that tunnel to the building, where they saw clothes and bags. The building looks like a place where criminals share their loot.
About seven persons that emerged from that building are in custody now. It became necessary that we do a thorough scientific profiling of the place. We have to send our sniffer dogs to the place. We have appealed to the crowd that jungle justice is not the way,” CP Owoseni said.
See tweets from the RRS combing the drainage channel for the alleged suspects.
Watch the video from Channels TV here.
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