ABIA Police Command has arrested one Sunday Ebasabor of Uromi in Esan North Local Government Area of Edo State, and his girlfriend, one Miss Grace Igwe of Agwulu in Umuahia, Abia State, for faking her kidnap to extort money from her family.
The Command said that Miss Igwe’s father, Mr. Obinna Igwe, had reported on August 9 that his daughter was missing.
The Police Commissioner, Mr. Leye Oyabade, told newsmen that after perfecting their plans, the suspects demanded ransom of N50,000 from the girl’s family, which he said was paid into the account of Ebasabor.
According to Oyabade, “our operatives monitored the account in their investigation, until he was arrested on September 19, at Akpakpava area of Benin, Edo State capital. The suspect led police to the girl.
“The lady herself connived with Ebasabor, her boyfriend, to send a text message to the parents, indicating that she had been kidnapped, believing that the two of them will share the money that will be sent to him.
“I am urging parents in Abia State to be careful and monitor the type of friends their children keep, because crime is taking new dimensions entirely. This is a very pathetic story; you can imagine the trauma the girl’s parents have gone through.
“This is a new trend that has been introduced into kidnapping and we want to warn our youths to desist from this type of arrangement with anybody to extort money from their parents. Our public relations department will equally go round all primary and secondary schools in the state to sensitise the students on the ills of cultism, kidnapping and drug abuse.”
Speaking to journalists, Miss Igwe claimed that she fell under the influence of a spell, which she alleged was cast on her by some fraudsters in Umuahia.
She said the fraudsters asked her to bring a certain amount of money and took a phone from her, which they promised to return when she brings the money.
Ebasabor, in his account, admitted that he called and sent text massages to Igwe’s parents to send the money for her bail from police custody, just to help her raise money to retrieve the phone the fraudsters took.
He said: “When my girlfriend visited me unannounced and told me of how she lost N100,000 in her office, I suspected she had fallen victim to fraudsters.
“When she opened up to me, I played along with her because I don’t have money to give her. I sent a threat message to her parents, that they should send me the money or they will be disconnected from their daughter.”