The Lagos State Police Command has paraded two former police sergeants and three others for various robbery offences.
The former officers identified as Sgt. Ochigbo Gabriel and Sgt. Francis Onuh were arrested alongside Emmanuel Audu, James Momoh and Sunday Onuh by men of the Inspector-General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team in the state.
The ex-police officers, who were dismissed from the force for different offences in 2009 over their involvement in various illegal activities in Warri, Delta State, decided to take up the tools of armed robbery.
The 33-year-old Audu, who joined the police in 2003, and was dismissed as a constable in 2009, told journalists that shortly after he lost his job, he relocated to Lagos and became a dispatch rider until December last year when he was looking for a job and met Peter Owocho, another member of the gang who introduced him to the gang.
Audu disclosed that he had participated in all the operations carried out by the gang.
He said he used his share of their loot run his family and pay his children’s school fees.
He said, “I live at Ikorodu with my family. I took part in all the operations, but I was arrested on June 7, 2016 by the police.”
A police source told Punch that the suspects specialised in robbing Chinese nationals in different parts of Lagos State.
According to the source, the suspects who were apprehended during an operation at the homes of four Chinese nationals in Gbagada, had carried out no fewer than 10 robberies between December 2015 and June 2016.
The source said, “The dismissed policemen normally gain access into the homes of the Chinese men under the pretence of conducting routine checks, or that they had information that they (the Chinese) were involved in drugs and currency counterfeiting.
“When they are allowed into their homes, the dismissed policemen would ransack the apartments and cart away all valuables including cash and electronic gadgets.”
One of the suspects, 33-year-old Sunday told newsmen that he had National Diploma in Business Administration.
He said he lost his job shortly before his marriage, and met a member of the robbery gang, known as Jack introduced him to their operations.
He said, “He told me he would introduce me to a business. That was when I learnt that it involved robbing Chinese expatriates.
“He said we would go to the houses of some Chinese people and pretend to be engineers and that if they allowed us in, we would rob them. He said if they were not at home, we would break in.
“Three of us went for the operation at Omole and we opened the door with a metal cutter since there was no one in the house. We stole phones, laptops and cash. I wouldn’t know how much we got, but I was given N500,000 cash.
“At the operation in Gbagada, we wore coveralls and told the expatriates we wanted to repair electricity cables and they opened their doors for us. We went in and robbed them of their phones, laptop and money. I got N45,000 as my share after that operation.”
He confessed further that the locally-made revolver pistol they used for operations belonged to Jack, and he was able to buy a car for taxi before he was arrested, after policemen traced one of the phones they stole at Gbagada to him.