The police in Benin have arrested three persons for allegedly initiating 35 students from various tertiary institutions in the state into cultism.
Edo State Police Command spokesman, DSP Stephen Onwochei who confirmed the arrest of the suspects, gave their names as Kingsley Nwachukwu, Amoo Oboba and Innocent Essien, adding that, the suspects were arrested at Ogbese forest in Ovia North East Local Government of the state, following a tip off.
Onwochei also confirmed that 15 of the students who were allegedly initiated into cultism were from one tertiary institution in the state.
The suspects were said to have specialised in moving from state to state to initiate students into cultism and were carrying out such initiation when a police team swooped on them while attempting to escape from the scene.
According to police sources, items recovered from the cultists include a car, locally made revolver pistol and three live cartridges. The suspects would soon be charged to court.
Meanwhile, operatives of the Edo state police Command have also arrested a 32-year-old man identified as Peter Okpe, who is said to specialise in using pepper to snatch vehicles from his victims.
The suspect was said to have been arrested after he lost control of a car he snatched and ran into a ditch along the Benin-Lagos express way.
A police source disclosed that the suspect and other members of his gang would hire a cab and later throw pepper into the eyes of the driver and in the process make away with the car.
In his last operation that led to his arrest, Peter and members of his gang reportedly boarded a cab at Okada junction and after a while asked the driver to stop after which he poured grinded pepper in the driver’s eyes and pushed him out of the car.
Luck however ran out of them when the car ran into a ditch and he was arrested by a combined team of local vigilante and policemen while other members of the gang escaped.
Police spokesman, DSP Stephen Onwochei while confirming the arrest, described the trend as a new development used by criminals in the state.
He said the case would be thoroughly investigated to unravel the operational tactics of the gang as well as ensuring that other members of the gang were arrested.