By Harrison Arubu
The police on Monday intercepted a four-man gang of heavily armed suspected kidnappers operating along waterways and hinterland in Rivers and Bayelsa.
The Force Public Relations Officer, Mr Donald Awunah, disclosed this in a statement in Abuja on Thursday.
Awunah said the suspects were intercepted by the Inspector-General of Police (I-G) Intelligence Response Team (IRT) on Azikiwe Road, Port Harcourt, while on their way for an operation.
He said that the IRT operatives, who acted on intelligence, were engaged in a gun battle by the “kidnappers’’ during which three of the latter were fatally wounded.
He said that one James Peter, aged 30, from Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa ,was arrested at the scene, while the rest escaped.
“The arrested member of the gang has been cooperating with the police in their investigation by providing very valuable information on the membership of the gang and their mode of operation.
“Weapons recovered from the kidnappers include one General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG), one AK47 rifle, chains of GPMG ammunition and two fully loaded AK47 magazines.
“Efforts are in top gear to arrest fleeing members of the gang and recover their cache of arms,’’ the police spokesman said.
He quoted the I-G, Mr Ibrahim Idris, as reiterating his appeal to Nigerians to keep assisting the police with valuable information on suspected criminals.
Idris assured the public of renewed commitment on the part of the police in the fight against crime and other anti-social behaviours, Awunah said.