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NAPTIP arrests cobbler for allegedly defiling 12-year-old student in Edo

The Benin zonal command of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) yesterday took into custody a 62-year-old cobbler, Mr. Chukwudi Augustine, who allegedly raped a 12-year-old student of Aduwawa Secondary School, Benin.

The commander, NAPTIP Benin Zonal Office, Nduka Nwanwenne, in a statement made available to newsmen, said the victim, a secondary school student sells ‘zobo drink’ for her mother.

Nwanwenne said the victim was patronized by the suspect who allegedly offered N500 to pay for N5O zobo drink. He added that the victim had no chance and left to come back later because she was conversant with the environment.

“Two weeks later, the victim went back to the suspect’s shop to collect the money but she met his absence. She was however directed by the suspect’s boy to his house, which was close by. On knocking on the door, the suspect dragged her in and defiled her. It was the cry of the victim that attracted neighbours who opened the door to rescue her.

“The suspect, who hails from Ishagu community in Ohazaria local government area of Ebonyi State, admitted to the crime as the investigation is being conducted to charge him to court,” Nwanwenne said.

The NAPTIP Commander added that the suspect upon realizing that the law will catch up with him, allegedly tried to settle the victim’s mother with a sum of N50,000 and later reduced it to N30,000 before he was apprehended by men of Nigerian Security and Civil Defence corps (NSCDC), Edo State Command, who eventually handed him over to NAPTIP.

Reacting to the arrest, Director General, NAPTIP, Dame Julie Okah-Donli, said the agency is geared towards protecting the girl child and will punish sexual offenders as required by law.

Meanwhile, a 35-year-old rape suspect, identified as Musa Ibrahim, has been detained in police custody in Kano State, for allegedly raping an eight-year-old girl, name withheld.

The incident happened at the Rijiyan Zaki area of Kano metropolis, when the suspected rapist, who had been a family friend, lured the eight-year-old girl with packs of Indomie noodles.

It was learned that the victim was conversant with Ibrahim, making it possible for him to convince and lure her to a corner of a building, where he succeeded in raping her.

However, reports have it that a relative of the suspect, who is an Immigration officer, was allegedly trying to use his influence to sweep the rape case under the carpet.

When contacted, the Kano Police spokesman, DSP Abdullahi Haruna, who confirmed the incident, said: ”Immediately the case was reported to the police, the Commissioner, Ahmed Iliyasu, order for a discreet investigation to unravel the circumstances that led to the incident.

”The suspect has been arrested and detained, while investigations have already commenced. The victim has been conveyed to the hospital for a medical check-up, to ascertain the extent of injury the girl must have suffered.”

At the conclusion of investigations, the CP said the suspect would be charged to court for prosecution.

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