Two men, who allegedly specialised in attacking hotels and raiding lodgers in Lagos, are now cooling their feet in police custody. The suspects, Kayode Johnson (30) aka Badoo and Sheriff Owolabi (28), used to attack hotels in the metropolis.
The suspects are members of an eight-man gang. Their modus operandi is to attack any hotel after surveillance, raid guest rooms and rob lodgers of their valuables. Speaking on how they operate, Johnson said: “Once we approach a hotel, we would bring out guns and threaten those outside. They would take us into the hotel. Each of us would start raiding rooms and lodgers. Whatever you get during that operation, is yours for the keeping.”
Johnson was arrested while heading for a robbery operation. He said three of them were supposed to go for the operation. But just as he was going to meet others at a designated venue, he saw some policemen and panicked.
The policemen noticed his suspicious movements and ordered him to halt. Immediately they ordered him to stop, he swiftly dropped the gun with him into the gutter. The policemen didn’t notice.
Although the policemen couldn’t pin anything on him, they, however, sensed he was a bad guy. When they took the suspect to the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS), Ikeja, their instincts were correct. Johnson turned out to be one of the most wanted criminals on ‘Police Wanted List.’
When he was interrogated, he started singing like a bird. He mentioned the names of other members of the gang, including Owolabi. Police went after others, but succeeded in catching only Owolabi.
Owolabi, who was angry with Johnson for daring to mention his name, said: “I went with him to rob only three times. I stopped going with them. He now mentioned my name to the police.
This time around, I didn’t even commit any crime. They just came to my area to arrest me. I quit crime in January. I didn’t go to Iju-Ishaga robbery with them.” Further confessing his crime, Johnson disclosed that he was arrested at MAN Centre area, Ikeja. He said: “I was walking, I saw the police patrol team coming. When the police saw me, they said ‘Mr. Man, stop there,’ I quickly dropped the gun in my hand into the gutter.
I bought the gun myself for N20,000. “When we went for the Iju-Ishaga operation, we saw people in front of the hotel, threatened them with guns, entered the hotel and started robbing. I have participated in robbery of two hotels. I started robbery three years ago. During robbery operations of hotels, everyone looks out for his own loot.”
Johnson added that his greatest haul was the robbery of an Indian national on Awolowo Way, Ikeja. He said: “We robbed a white man at Ikeja. It was Prince and I that went for the operation. We broke the man’s door and went inside. He was sleeping. We woke him up and robbed him of his dollars.
“But my girlfriend stole the dollars from me. She came to meet me at the hotel after the operation. It was my partner that told her that we got dollars from the operation. We slept together that night. I woke up in the morning to discover that she had fled with my dollars. Since then, I had not set eyes on her. “We stole 34 pieces of $100 bills. We shared it. I took 19 pieces and gave Prince 18 pieces.
After robbing the white man, we went to lodge at Shugus Hotel, at Mushin. My lover knew I was a robber. She used to beg me to stop robbery.” The suspect said that he had always wanted to quit, but found it difficult. He said: “I had wanted to stop, I prayed to God, but I continued. I wasn’t enjoying it. If I’m allowed to go, I wouldn’t rob again.”