Nigeria: Police break 'kidnapping family'

By Thisdayonline

Abia state Police Command has discovered a family in Urata village, Isiala Ngwa North local government of Abia state, where kidnapping is run as a family business involving a mother and her three children.

The shock discovery that 62-year-old Mrs. Beta Aturuobi, her two sons and daughter were into kidnapping came to light when the anti kidnapping squad answered a distress call at the weekend and rescued an elderly man abducted and held by the family gang.

A retiree, Elder Onyeukwu Ugboaja of Umujima village in Osisioma council, was said to have been kidnapped by the gang with the hope that his rich children would eventually pay a ransom to free him.

Luck however ran out on the family gang when the police got a tip off from somebody who had noticed an unusual movement in the house where the victim was held at Isiala Ngwa North.

On raiding the kidnappers' hideout, the two sons were said to have escaped but their mother was arrested along with 22-year-old Nancy while two human skulls and various guns were recovered.

The visibly shaken victim told THISDAY that he was kidnapped from his country home on Sunday, September 20, 2009, by a gang of five heavily armed men who bundled him into the boot of a Mercedes car they had come with and drove to their hide-out.

Narrating his experience, the victim said: “At their hide-out, they asked for my phone number and that of my wife but when I told them I did not have the numbers off hand, they got angry and threatened to kill me.”