Three-year-old boy rescued from abductors in Lokoja
NEMESIS caught up with a suspected kidnap kingpin in Lokoja when he was tracked down and arrested while neck deep in the act by the men of the Department of Security Services after a sustained surveillance.
When the 21-year-old phone seller, Sunday Okafor, was paraded at the DSS State headquarters in Lokoja Tuesday, he confessed to his sordid act saying he capitalised on his closeness to the parents of his victim to lure little Prince Roberts.
He said he was lured into the act by one accomplice named Okoro, saying all started after he returned from Christmas break from Anambra when Okoro told him to think out how they would make quick money from the sale of children in China and South Africa.
“He told me if I could kidnap any little baby, they can make as much as N5million from selling the baby in Togo.
He said he carried the boy to the filling station in Nataco from where they planned to continue with their evil act but was apprehended before they could perfect their deal.
The three-year-old boy was rescued by the men of the DSS after their surveillance yielded positive results having been on the trail of the suspect.
Paparanda in Lokoja, is a popular GSM market where telephone dealers and engineers display their wares. The parents of the victim, who were oblivious of Okafor’s evil design, allowed him to play with their first son within the market.
To cover his intention he started playing with the child in an unusual manner including taking him away from the parents.
Henry Roberts, the father of the rescued Prince narrated their ordeal: ”On Saturday after we came to the market around 10:00am, my wife and the children were eating when a customer came and she had to attend to him. That was when my neighbour, the suspect, had the opportunity to carry my boy and started playing with him.
“Already my wife had informed me that, in the last one week, the suspect had developed interest in playing with the boy. So when Prince got missing, she pointed accusing fingers at him, but I never believed her because I could not comprehend how a fellow Ibo and a friend with whom we share many things could do such to me.”
He continued: “I had to enquire from a little girl who sells pure water who intimated me that she saw when they carried my son away. She said the person who carried my son was not familiar. At that point I became so worried and I started running from pillar to post searching for my son. I went to the police station to make the entry.”
He said the police told him to check back in the evening that by then they must have received some feedback from the signals they sent out after which he returned to his business.
“A short while they called me and said they have arrested the person. When we rushed down, to my chagrin, it was my neighbour, and I asked how could have done that. It was then the SSS told me they have been on the prowl of such criminal elements and that was why they mounted their surveillance and were able to track him.
He said the SSS also played him the video clips of how his son was abducted. ‘That was when I heard my neighbour’s voice saying the boy was not always free on weekdays but Saturdays and that was when they would strike.”
He was full of gratitude to God that he could get his first son back.
The mother of the victim Victoria Roberts said her first son was hale and hearty. “I give thanks to God who made it possible for me to recover my son. My advise is for parents to take good care of their wards and that every one is a suspect because even your brother can be your greatest enemy who may kidnap you child for a token.”
The DSS State Director Mr. Mike Fubara said, in view of the forthcoming general elections, his men were alerted on plans by evil men to kidnap children for rituals.
He said based on that, they had mounted surveillance and spread their dragnets for possible suspects.
According to him their efforts yielded positive result in the tracking of Okafor and subsequent rescue of little Prince who would have been sold for N200, 000 in Togo.
He called on parents to be extra vigilant by keeping close contact with their wards.