The Police Command in Niger says it has arrested 12 suspects for alleged conspiracy, robbery, gunrunning and kidnapping.
The command also announced that the arrested persons included those suspected to be supplying fuel to bandits in different parts of the state.
Monday Kuryas, Commissioner of Police in the state, announced this when the command presented the suspects to newsmen on Saturday in Minna.
Mr Kuryas said that on Oct. 2, Police Safer highway patrol on Makera-Mokwa road arrested Mohammed Bello and Nura Umar in a vehicle.
He explained that during the search of the vehicle two AK- 47 rifles, 2 AK- 49 rifles, 16 magazines, 417 live ammunition of 7.62 calibres and 150 RPG live ammunition were recovered.
He said that suspects confessed to the crime and claimed that the arms were being taken from Sokoto to one person known as Yellow in Mokwa.
The commissioner also said that on Oct. 21, police operatives attached to Swashi Police outpost of New-Bussa Division arrested one Habib Sani of Kanti village, Mashegu Local Government Area.
“The suspect was arrested at Swashi village with 14 locally fabricated guns, comprising six double- barrelled guns and eight triple-barrelled guns concealed in a sack bag while on transit in a commercial vehicle from Kanti village to Guffanti, New-Bussa, Borgu Local Government Area.
“During interrogation, the suspects confessed and claimed that the guns were given to him by one Bilya, a local fabricator from same village (presently at large) to deliver to one Bulus of Guffanti village in Borgu at the rate of N1,000-commission on each of the guns,” he said.
The commissioner also said that on Oct. 21, information was received that a male victim from Kwanar-Biri village near Kontagora was kidnapped by suspected kidnappers.
“Police operatives attached to ‘A’ Division Kontagora/vigilante went to the hideout of the kidnappers on Oct. 27 and arrested one Abubakar Muhammadu and Abubakar Umar both of Kwanar-Biri, Kontagora Local Government Area.
“As a result of the operation, the abducted victim was rescued while one of the suspects was gunned down by the police and other members of the syndicate escaped into the forest with gun shot injuries.
“On Oct. 29, based on a credible tip-off that some men stormed a victim’s residence at GRA Agaie and robbed him.
“Police detectives attached to Agaie Division swung into action and arrested three suspects in connection with the case.
“During interrogation, the suspects confessed to have conspired with other members of the gang who are presently at large.
The commissioner said that some of the stolen items were recovered.
He said on Oct. 2, based on credible information, police operatives attached to Bosso Division arrested one Mohammed Muazu an of Tudun-Fulani, Minna and Salihu Isah of Kuta, Shiroro Local Government Area.
“The said Mohammed Muazu was arrested at Tudun-Fulani for being suspected to be a motorcycle snatcher within Minna metropolis.
“He confessed to have been responsible for snatching more than 10 motorcycles from different victims at different locations in Minna.
He said that he used to sell the stolen motorcycles to his receiver — Salihu Isah of Kuta.
“Salihu Isah also confessed to have been receiving motorcycles from the suspect.
“Also, on Oct. 3, there was a tip-off that some individuals were sighted buying petroleum product inside a jerrycan at a filling station, Tudun-Fulani, Minna.
“Police operatives attached to Bosso Division swung into action and went to the filling station where one Umar Mohammad a fuel black market dealer of Gussassi village, and Adamu Atiku, a fuel attendant of the filling station of Bosso Estate, Minna, were arrested.
“During interrogation, the suspects confessed to the crime, while Umar Mohammed claimed that he sold the petroleum product to motorcycle operators,” the commissioner said.
The commissioner also said that all suspects would be arraigned as soon as investigations were concluded.