Among the suspects were two female students from a secondary school who were arrested for orchestrating a false kidnapping scheme and extorting money from their mother.
During a public presentation of the suspects at the command headquarters in Akure, the state capital, on Monday, Commander Akogun Adetunji Adeleye revealed that the two girls, aged 13 and 15 and in Junior Secondary School (JSS) 1 and JSS 3, respectively, were responsible for the crime.
According to the commander, the girls concealed themselves in Oka-Akoko, in Akoko Southwest Local Government Area, and contacted their mother pretending to be kidnappers. They demanded a ransom of N100,000.
Adeleye further disclosed that the girls, posing as kidnappers, also threatened the monarch of their town, coercing him to pay the ransom within 24 hours to ensure the safety of the abductees.
He stated, “The 28 suspects we are parading today (Monday) shows that we have more kidnapping than any other criminal activities. This is in continuation of our efforts to ensure that kidnapping in Ondo State becomes a thing of the past. We have people who staged their own kidnappings and raised alarm, but through diligent investigations, we were able to unravel the mystery surrounding their disappearance, and they have confessed.”
The Amotekun commander mentioned that the suspects were arrested in collaboration with operatives from the Department of State Security, as their telephone line was tracked to their location.
One of the girls confessed to the crime, stating that her elder sister lured her into it.
The 13-year-old girl explained, “On that day, my sister and I spent the night at our grandma’s place and left around 6:00 am the next day. While on our way back home, my sister told me about her plan to get money from our mother. She proposed that we stage our own kidnapping and ask for N50,000 ransom each from our mother. My sister taught me what to say when we called our mother. We didn’t know that it was the monarch speaking with us on the phone, and we threatened to harm the victims if the ransom was not paid promptly.”