The Rivers State Police Command said its men arrested 10 suspected kidnappers during a raid of a criminal hideout in Igwuruta, Ikwerre Local Government Area of the state on Saturday.
The command said the feat was achieved after the state Commissioner of Police, Olatunji Disu, led operatives to comb bushes and destroy suspected kidnappers’ camp behind the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Igwurita, on the outskirt of Port Harcourt, believed to be a hideout for miscreants.
Speaking with newsmen after the operation, Olugbenga said the command was worried about recent activities of suspected kidnappers terrorising the Obiri-Ikwerre-Airport Road axis, near the state capital.
He also disclosed that more than 12 make-shift tents in camps abandoned by the suspected kidnappers were destroyed.
Olugbenga said, “It is a routine exercise. We normally go on a show of strength once or twice weekly and we mostly patrol vulnerable points where we feel we are having issues with hoodlums trying to disturb the peace of the state.
“You would have observed that within these few days, there have been issues of hoodlums trying to waylay people going to the airport.
“We have deployed a lot of operatives in that axis and as part of our routine as directed by the Commissioner of Police to ensure that the state is free of crime and criminality we have to move in there. He (the Commissioner of Police) led the team to the place and distributed everyone to all angles of the bush
“You know behind the stadium there are lots of abandoned buildings, buildings that were being developed and abandoned, tarred roads.
“And it is a very good place for criminals to hide. We got information that some of them hibernate in that place. From intelligence gathering, they normally come and do what they like and go back.”
Continuing, he said, “So we combed the area with the Commissioner of Police early hours of this morning and we have arrested some people who are hibernating in that area, about 10 of them.
“That place (Airport) is very important to us because of dignitaries and other citizens of the state, including foreigners, and we cannot afford anything untoward to happen there.
“So we have a special concentration in that area and other few places within the town. So that is the reason for this operation and it will continue.”
The DCP in charge of Operations called on law-abiding members of the public to assist the police with useful information that can lead to the identification and dislodging of criminal hideouts and the arrest of suspects.