Nephew kidnaps, murders, buries aunt


The suspects

IN recent years, things had started looking up for 63-year-old Ogo Omereji, who was married to Omereji family in Awara, Ohaji/Egbema Local Council of Imo State. She was in good health, her children were doing well but she still loved going to her farms from which she regularly harvested rich yields of yam and cassava.

But the unsuspecting woman did not know that her good fortune brought bitterness and anger into the hearts of some people, among them her nephew, Emeka Chinedu, 27, whose mother was her younger sister.

With two others, Sunday Uchenna, 28 and Gift Emeka, 26, Chinedu arranged for the kidnap of her aunt, kept her in the forest for two weeks, fed her only on sausages and soft drinks before she died. That was after they had received a ransom of N500,000. They buried her in a shallow grave in the forest.

These were some of the details that emerged at the weekend when the Imo State Police Command paraded the suspects following their arrest, which is widely being acclaimed as one of the successes of the Police Commissioner, Taiwo Lakanu’s Operation Kpuchapu (Wipe Out Criminals) in the state.

The Command’s Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Mr. Andrew Enwerem, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), who briefed journalists, commended all those who played a part in the arrest of the kidnappers.

Giving an account of the crime, Enwerem said: “On September 26, 2015, one Madam Ogo Omereji, was kidnapped in her farm in Awara. Following the report, operatives of the Anti-Kidnap Unit arrested the three suspects, all from Awara and relations to the victim. During interrogation, the suspects confessed to have kidnapped the victim, murdered and subsequently buried her in a shallow grave in the forest, after collected the sum of N500,000.”

The prime suspect, Chinedu, admitted that the late woman was her mother’s biological elder sister, disclosing that the woman died by herself in the bush. He also said that another suspect, Obinna who is on the run, collected the entire ransom. In pidgin English, he said: “Obinna collected the money. The boy no give me N1. He run.”

Giving his account, another suspect, Gift said, when Chinedu, Obinna and Uchenna, approached him, he was warned that having heard the plans, he had no option than to accept to be part or he would be killed. He also said their reason was that the children of the late woman were rich, without Chinedu benefitting, even to buy him a bus for transport business.

Gift said after one week, they took him to a shrine were oath was administered on him to be part of the deal. They also warned him to remain in the village.
“When the matter became intense, I told them to release the woman since some money had been paid, but they said the money was not complete. They said if I called their number again, I would not be alive,” he said.

Another suspect, Uchenna, said the deceased was abducted because she was a stumbling block to Chinedu. He admitted that Chinedu dug the grave and buried the victim. After the burial, he said they went back to their homes in Awara until one day when security men came and arrested them.

A search party of villagers and policemen were led to the shallow grave from which the body was exhumed and later reburied at a chosen site in the village.

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