Security operatives burst illegal gold mining operation in Abuja
…Arrest 21 suspects including Chinese nationals, community leader
Security operatives including men of Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Police Command have stormed criminal hideouts in border towns between Abuja and neighbouring states and arrested 21 suspects including Chinese nationals and a community leader, as they stepped up efforts at checkmating the activities of criminals especially kidnappers, bandits among others.
It was gathered that the joint security operations took place on Monday and Tuesday.
Speaking on the arrests, FCT Police Public Relations Officer, Josephine Adeh, said, “The menace of kidnapping, banditry and other criminal activities within seven states namely; Kogi, Niger, Kaduna, Nasarawa, Benue, Plateau states and the Federal Capital Territory, operationally codenamed “G-7” has become a worrisome trend.
“As such, heads of the respective security agencies in the region are planning to embark on a massive raid and cleanup operation in all mapped out hideouts, camps and areas serving as refuges to miscreants.
“The exercise is code named operation ‘Safe G-7’ and is intending to further promote confidence building and take the fight to the miscreants in their hideout at the various boundaries between the FCT and the said contingents states, so as to enhance safety and security within and around the states.
“The continuation of Tuesday’s operation in Matte, Kwali area council, to reclaim the village which was recently invaded by suspected bandits, was successfully and immediately followed up with deployments to provide the needed security going forward.
“Following the above, on Tuesday 4th January 2022, the JTF in compliance with the G-7 mandates on day two of their operation, continued the patrol of villages sharing boundaries with Nassarawa state.
“The team upon the receipt of actionable intelligence, stormed a camp at Azam village, where an illegal mining site of about 40 minutes walking distance from the said village was discovered.
“The miners who were said to have established a symbiotic relationship with bandits/Kidnappers, engaged the team in a gun duel and were forced to retreat, and subsequently over powered by the superior fire power of the JTF and were arrested.
“The team recorded the successful arrest of about 21 illegal miners on the sites including foreign nationals. Majority amongst the arrested suspects were from the various bordering states, confessing to have enjoyed unfiltered cooperation with the head of the local community who was immediately taken into custody alongside the arrested suspects.
“The three male Chinese national suspects arrested in connection to the offence will be officially handed over to the Nigeria Immigration Service, with a view of establishing their immigration status in Nigeria. Upon arrest, exhibits recovered included: Refined and unrefined gold, two gold weigh scales, criminal charms, seventeen mobile phones, four motorcycles, two dane guns, shovels, cutlasses, two pumping machines, one generator, substances suspected to be Cannabis, and other forms of hard drugs.
“The two suspects linked with the possession of the aforementioned drugs will be handed over to the NDLEA. Investigation is ongoing and upon completion suspects will be charged to court.
“The Commissioner of Police FCT Command, Babaji Sunday while registering the command’s unflinching commitment to the crusade against crime and criminality in the state, urges residents not to relent in cooperating with the Police by rendering prompt and accurate information relevant in supporting the command’s anti-criminality crusade.
The command implores residents to report all suspicious movements, emergencies or distresses through the following lines: 08032003913, 08061581938, 07057337653 and 08028940883.