Rivers Police Rescues 3 Kidnapped Family Members, Eliminates Notorious Sea Pirate, Arrest Child Traffickers
The Rivers State Police Command has successfully neutralized John Togo the Second, a notorious and high-profile criminal involved in sea piracy, kidnapping, and arms trafficking. John Togo was a significant threat to coastal communities in Rivers State, particularly along Bonny-Port Harcourt, Okrika, and Andoni waterways.
John Togo, is the ‘Anchor Head’ of the Iceland Confraternity, he orchestrated a reign of terror, causing fear and devastation among residents and boat passengers.
He operated illegal oil bunkering camps, engaged in arms trafficking, and was responsible for numerous heinous acts such as ambushes, murders, and robberies.
John Togo’s criminal career began in the Borikiri area of Port Harcourt, where he initially engaged in cult-related activities. Gradually, he graduated from petty crimes and evolved into a full-fledged kidnapper and sea pirate, assembling a gang of ruthless criminals along the way. Adopting the alias of ex-militant John Togo, who had been killed in July 2011, he and his gang gained notoriety in 2021 due to their involvement in a series of sea piracy and kidnappings, which ignited the #EndSeaPiracy protests and campaigns that reverberated throughout Bonny Island in January 2021.
One of the most brazen acts committed by John Togo was the ambush and subsequent murder of four members of a sister security Agency on the 1st of November 2023 along the Bakana River in Degema Local Government Area. Notably, he was planning to ambush security personnel patrolling the Bille-Degema-Okrika waterways with speedboats to seize their weapons before he was neutralized. Throughout his criminal career, John Togo engaged in numerous shootouts with the Marine Police, Nigerian Army, and NSCDC, displaying his utter disregard for law enforcement and public safety. In one such encounter on the 17th of July 2023, Togo engaged security forces in a shootout, compelling them to abandon their gunboat.
Despite previous encounters with security forces, John Togo continued to elude capture. He targeted commercial boats, mercilessly killing drivers and throwing passengers into the sea as he stole the vessels.
The turning point came when John Togo abducted Precious George, the Youth Leader of Ibifara Polo, on the 30th of May 2023. After holding George captive for twelve days and receiving a ransom of 2.5 million Naira, Togo’s face was unveiled, setting the police on his trail.
Acting on credible intelligence, the Rivers State Police Command, in collaboration with the C4i intelligence unit and the Borikiri Police Division, launched an operation to apprehend Togo and his gang. Cornered and outnumbered, Togo and his accomplices engaged in a firefight, resulting in Togo’s death and the recovery of his body.
The neutralization of John Togo, the merciless sea pirate, underscores the commitment of the Rivers State Police Command to protect lives and properties. We assure the public that we will continue to work tirelessly to rid Rivers State of criminal elements. This successful operation sends a clear message that lawlessness and impunity will not be tolerated.
We extend our gratitude to all the officers involved in this operation for their bravery and professionalism. Our condolences go out to the families and loved ones of the victims who suffered at the hands of John Togo.
The Rivers State Police Command will maintain close collaboration with other security agencies and stakeholders to ensure a safe and secure environment for all. Together, we will prevail against criminal elements and build a peaceful and prosperous society.
2. POLICE APPREHEND HUMAN TRAFFICKERS IN PORT HARCOURT: RESCUE OF A DAY-OLD BABY
The Rivers State Police Command has successfully apprehended two suspects involved in a disturbing case of human trafficking in Port Harcourt. The arrested individuals are Daniel Destiny Onyegbulem, a 28-year-old male from Umuoye in Etche LGA, Rivers State, and Uzodinma Eze, also known as Thank-God, a 33-year-old male from Omanwa, Ikwerre LGA, Rivers State.
On Monday, 22nd January 2024, diligent officers from the C4i Intelligence Unit of the Rivers State Police Command conducted a routine stop and search operation along Igwuruta-Eneka Road. During the operation, their sharp instincts led them to intercept and question Daniel and Uzodinma, who were riding a commercial motorbike (Okada) from Chokocho, Etche, to Eneka.
In the course of the search, the officers made a shocking discovery. Daniel was found carrying a sack bag that contained a one-day-old baby. The baby, still covered in blood, was struggling for breath inside the sack, with the placenta also found alongside.
Promptly recognizing the urgency of the situation, the officers swiftly provided immediate medical attention to the infant, ensuring his safe transportation to the Police Hospital. The dedicated medical personnel at the hospital skillfully resuscitated the baby, who is now in stable health and receiving the necessary care.
Following the apprehension, Daniel cooperated with the investigating officers and revealed crucial information about the criminal network involved in this abhorrent act. He disclosed that he had been contacted by a woman known as ‘Mama Destiny,’ a pastry vendor in his locality. Mama Destiny had enlisted his services to transport the sack bag containing the baby to Eneka junction, with instructions to await further contact from an associate who would receive the bag. In exchange for his involvement, Daniel was enticed with a payment of 10,000 Naira.
Further revelations emerged through Daniel’s account. He explained that he was summoned to a location along Egbi Road to finalize the transaction. Accompanied by Mama Destiny’s husband, he was driven to Chokocho junction, where he met Uzodinma, the operator of the commercial motorbike they used for the delivery.
Daniel, remorseful for his actions, admitted his culpability in the crime, attributing his involvement to greed and the influence of malevolent forces.
The Rivers State Police Command commends the unwavering dedication and professionalism exhibited by the officers involved in this operation. Their swift action and astute observations led to the apprehension of these human traffickers and the rescue of an innocent child from a grim fate.
The Rivers State Police Command urges anyone with information that could assist in this ongoing investigation to come forward and cooperate fully with the authorities.
We reaffirm our commitment to safeguarding the lives and welfare of all individuals within our jurisdiction. The Rivers State Police Command will continue to vigorously combat human trafficking and all forms of criminality, ensuring that the perpetrators face the full weight of the law.
3. “COMMUNITY COOPERATION LEADS TO SUCCESSFUL RESCUE OF KIDNAPPED FAMILY”.
The Rivers State Police Command is pleased to announce the successful rescue of three victims who were kidnapped from their residence in Omuoluta, Igwuruta-Ali. The swift response of our officers to a distress call led to the safe recovery of Blessing Egbuna and her two daughters, Sonia and Chinaza.
On the early morning of Sunday, January 28, 2024, our attention was drawn to the abduction of the victims by six armed and masked individuals. The incident occurred as they were about to enter their home after returning from work at their provision shop. An eyewitness provided crucial information to the Police, reporting the armed nature of the perpetrators.
Without delay, our dedicated officers mobilized and executed a well-coordinated operation to rescue the victims. Upon encountering the kidnappers, our officers were met with gunfire, but their unwavering commitment and bravery compelled the suspects to abandon the victims and flee the scene.
We express our gratitude to the courageous member of the community who promptly alerted the police to the incident. The successful rescue operation serves as a testament to the indispensable role that community cooperation plays in our collective efforts to combat kidnapping in Rivers State.
The rescued victims, Blessing Egbuna, Sonia, and Chinaza, have conveyed their profound appreciation and prayers to the police officers involved in their rescue. Their reunion with their family is a heartening outcome, underscoring the effectiveness of our ongoing commitment to upholding justice.
Intensive efforts are currently underway to apprehend the fleeing perpetrators, and we are confident that with the continued support and collaboration of the community, we will bring them to justice.
We urge all residents and visitors in Rivers State to remain vigilant and proactive, reporting any suspicious activities to the police promptly. Together, we can create a safer environment and rid our state of the scourge of kidnapping.
CP OLATUNJI R. DISU, Psc,
COMMISSIONER OF POLICE,
RIVERS STATE COMMAND,