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POLICE: Suspected killers of Catholic seminarian were responsible for several deaths, kidnappings in North- Central
Arrests three suspects, IGP orders manhunt for others
THE POLICE on Sunday announced it has arrested three accused persons involved in the murder of late Nnadi Michael, about three months after a criminal group of hoodlums attacked the Catholic Good Shepherd Major Seminary at Gonin Gora, Kakau in Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
The gang had on 9th January, kidnapped four seminarians, killed one and later released the remaining three on 31st January, after receiving a ransom.
Rev. Father Joel Usman, Registrar of the seminary school also confirmed Michael’s death about 24 hours after three of the abducted students were released.
“On a sad note!!! This is to inform all our friends and well-wishers that the remaining abducted Seminarian has been found dead,” the clergy had announced.
However, the Police also accused the suspects as being responsible for other kidnapping incidents including the death of one Mrs. Ataga, wife of Dr. Phillip Ataga, who was abducted with her two children on 24th January.
The incident had occurred at Juji community in Chikun LGA of the state.
The Police, however, identified the suspects through a statement shared via their verified twitters handle as, “Tukur Usman ‘m’ aged 37, father of seven (7); Shehu Bello ‘m’ aged 40, father of five (5) and Mustapha Mohammed ‘m’ aged 30, father of one (1), all of Igabi LGA of Kaduna State.”
They were reportedly arrested after months of intensive intelligence-led operations by detectives of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT).
According to the Police, the arrested persons were part of a 19-man ‘hybrid terrorist criminal network’ terrifying the north-central part of the nation and also responsible for the kidnap of six students and two teachers of Engravers College in Chikun.
The police stated that the students were abducted while in the school arena on 3rd October, 2019.
“Mrs Ataga was killed by the gang following her heroic resistance to the despicable and inhuman attempt by the leader of the gang to rape her. The suspects after killing her released the daughters and corpse of the slain woman to the family after collecting ransom.
“Further investigations reveal that the same criminal gang is responsible for the kidnap of six students and two teachers of Engravers College, Chikun LGA, Kaduna, from their school premises on October 3, 2019.
“The suspects, known to belong to a hybrid terrorist criminal network causing untold havoc in North-Central, Nigeria, have confessed to several other random operations along Abuja-Kaduna Expressway where they kidnapped, killed and robbed motorists, collecting ransom and valuables running into millions of naira,” the police stated.
However, Inspector-General of Police, Mohammad Adamu, restated the force’s commitment to ensure that crimes across the country are reduced to the barest minimum, with a promise to arrest the remaining members of the gang at large.