Rivers Police Unmask Keke Robbers’ Network, Arrest 14 Suspects

Rivers Police Unmask Keke Robbers’ Network, Arrest 14 Suspects
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In the past few months, armed robbers using Keke (tricycles) have attacked various parts of Rivers State. Commissioner of Police Olatunji Rilwan Disu ordered all divisions and tactical units to crack down on these criminals.

Updates on the recent trends.

1. On April 4, 2024, the Rivers State Police Command arrested a four-man gang specialized in terrorizing residents in various parts of the State, especially Eliozu, and Rumuodara in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, these gang posed as drivers or commuters of tricycles (Keke Napep) to rob innocent citizens of their valuable starting from 7 pm daily. In a bid to rob a victim of her belongings, two of them were arrested by the Elimgbu Division; Arinze Onovo ‘m’ age 32 yrs. old from Ogu Local Government Area of Enugu State and Bright Okere ‘m’ age 29 yrs., a native of Ndoki Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers State. Exhibits recovered are one Tricycle and one kitchen knife 

Efforts are ongoing to apprehend the other gang members and recover their operational weapons.  

2. On March 8, 2024, operatives of the command while on a routine patrol along Igbo/Etche in Etche Local Government Area of Rivers State intercepted one Terry Monday ‘m’ age 22 yrs old, a native of Akwa-Ibom State and Chile Sunday ‘m’ age 24 yrs old a native from Abia State. They confessed to belonging to a gang resident in Abia State who constantly steals tricycles in Rivers State and diverts them to Abia for sale. They were in the process of diverting a stolen tricycle when they were apprehended.

Recovered from them are one tricycle, a locally made pistol, and one cartridge. The Police are still on the hunt for two other members of the gang who fled, an ex-convict.

3. On 27th April 2024, at about 7:45 am, during a routine stop and search along Eneka Road, Operatives of the Command intercepted one Joshua Chukwuemeka ‘m’ age 23yrs old, a Keke driver and a native of Imo State. Upon a search, one locally made rifle, and one live cartridge was found in his possession. The suspect led the police to his gang’s hideout in Ogbo, Ahoada East Local Government Area where one of his accomplices was arrested; one Martins Gods power ‘m’ age 24yrs old a native from Ogbo in Ahoada East Local Government Area of Rivers State. The rifle, cartridge, and their operational tricycle are in Police custody as the investigation is still ongoing.

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4. On 27th May 2024, at about 8:30pm, operatives of the command on patrol along the oil mill by-pass spotted a parked tricycle with some occupants. As the Police van approached, four men jumped out and fled into a nearby bush path. Exhibits recovered from the abandoned Keke included three Android phones and a stainless-steel dagger. The Police were able to contact the owners of the recovered phones, who revealed that they were robbed at gunpoint.

On 10th June 2024, a complaint was received at the Anti-Kidnapping Unit by one Olisa Chukwu and some members of National Union Task Force for tricycle (Keke) riders, claiming to be the owner of the recovered tricycle. After discreet investigations, it was revealed that the documents of the Keke bore a different name from the declared owner. The police continued investigations and proceeded to arrest one Nnamdi Eze ‘m’ age 27 yrs., a native of Ezza-South Local Government Area, Ebonyi, who confessed to the crime that he was the driver of an armed robbery gang at Rumuokoro, Eliozu. Investigations are still ongoing.

5. On 5th July 2024, at about 10:30 pm officers attached to the Elelenwo Division acting on credible intelligence gathered that a victim (name withheld) was attacked and robbed by five armed men at Oil Mill Junction, in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State while waiting to board a taxi. Police operatives swung into action and arrived at the scene. The hoodlums, still positioned to rob more victims, upon sighting the Police, ran into their hide-out at Gariki black spot, Elelenwo. The police gave them hot chase and apprehended Henry John ‘m’ age 29yrs old, Bamido Tony ‘m’ age 32yrs old, Sylvester Isoja ‘m’ age 42yrs old, all residents of Gariki.

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Exhibits recovered from the suspects include one iPhone 12 pro max, and one Samsung XA Android phone. Efforts have been intensified to arrest other fleeing suspects.

6. On 6th July 2024, at about 7:40 pm, operatives of Elekahia Division while on patrol along Mummy B Road Port Harcourt, intercepted a tricycle (keke) with four occupants and upon sighting the police, they abandoned the tricycle and fled. A search was conducted on the abandoned Keke and two locally made pistols, two live cartridges, one expended cartridge, one dagger, one Bluetooth radio, and Tramadol pills were recovered. Efforts are ongoing to apprehend the fleeing suspects.

7. On 6th July 2024, Operatives of the Command apprehended a gang of criminals from Abia State, who operate mainly in Rivers State. The arrested criminals, Emeka Eze ‘m’, Adaeze Nwamara ‘f’ and Chika Nwangwa ‘m’ had previously robbed a middle-aged woman in June 2024, using Green-coloured Toyota Carina with registration number AGL 539 BT. They had diverted her from Artillery to GRA and robbed her of her phone and used the phone to withdraw from her account.

On the day of their arrest, the lady was waiting for a taxi at Rukpokwu, and they attempted to pick her up again using a one-chance strategy. Upon sighting them in the same vehicle, she raised an alarm, and passers-by responded by nabbing them and alerting the Police. 

They confessed to the crime and revealed their modus operandi: All three of them would sit in a taxi with two of them posing as passengers. They would pick up a single passenger, and during the journey, one of the phoney passengers would pose as a foreigner and attempt to pay the driver with dollar bills. This action would distract and destabilize the unsuspecting victims and give them an opportunity to rob them.  They came all the way from Abia State to perpetrate their havoc here in Rivers State. Their operational vehicle remains in Police custody as investigations continue.

8. On July 7, 2024, at 11 pm, operatives of the command responded to a distress call about a four-man syndicate attempting to rob tricycle riders at Market Road junction, Mango Estate, Elelenwo, Port-Harcourt. The Police swiftly responded and arrested one suspect named  Justice Imeh m, age 30yrs old, a native of  Akwa-Ibom State,  while others escaped. A locally made pistol with a live cartridge was recovered from him. As investigations continue, while the suspect is cooperating with police, providing information to apprehend the fleeing suspects.

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9. On 8th. July 2024 at about 11 pm, operatives of the Command attached to the Rumuolumeni Division, while conducting a stop and search in front of the station intercepted a Black-coloured Mazda car, registration number yet unknown with Three occupants. One of the occupants, Solomon Gabriel ‘m’ age 29yrs old , and immediately alighted the vehicle to prevent the Police from searching the vehicle or its occupants. As he stepped out, the vehicle sped off with the other occupants. During interrogation, the arrested suspect confessed to being a member of a one-chance syndicate operating in Port Harcourt and its environs. The suspect is cooperating with the Police by giving useful information that could lead to the arrest of other fleeing suspects. The investigation is in progress.

The Rivers State Commissioner of Police, CP Olatunji Disu commends the men of the State Police Command for their good work in making the streets of Rivers State safer and charged them to do more in the fight against crime in all its forms.

He further assures residents and visitors in the state to remain confident that he is determined to lead the Command with utmost professionalism and dedication.

He warns criminals and troublemakers to desist from their underworldly actions as there would be no hiding place for those who have refused to repent.

SP GRACE IRINGE KOKO (ANIPR),

POLICE PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER,

RIVERS STATE POLICE COMMAND

JULY 11, 2024

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