Police bust suspected serial rapists targeting online victims

51

The Rivers State Police Command said its men had arrested three suspected serial rapists, including two ex-convicts who allegedly employed various means to lure their victims, rape them and steal their valuables in Port Harcourt and other parts of the state.

The police said the suspects use online chats to lure their victims to hotels and drug them before carrying out the wicked act.

The spokesperson for the command, Grace Iringe-Koko, disclosed this in a statement issued in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.

Iringe-Koko said the arrest of one of the suspects, 32-year-old Louise Brutolu, after its operatives swung into action in the case of abduction reported to the command, saying the suspect was also involved in other crimes, while the gang leader was nabbed months afterwards.

The statement reads, “Following a reported abduction case involving Agor Ogechi ‘F,’ a 28-year-old resident of Elele in Ikwerre LGA of the state, on July 1, 2023, the police swiftly intervened and have successfully apprehended the prime suspect involved in a series of heinous crimes.

“Investigations revealed that the suspect, identified as Louise Brutolu, ‘M,’ a 32-year-old resident of Igoni Street, Abuloma, employed the use of phone chats to lure his victims to the Pacific Suite Hotel, Abuloma. Upon booking a room, the suspect drugged the victims, rendering them unconscious, and subsequently stole their valuables.

“In the case of Agor Ogechi, her iPhone, a sum of N20, 000 and her ATM card were reported stolen.

“Acting on the victim’s complaint, the Anti-Kidnapping Unit promptly initiated an operation that culminated in the arrest of Louise Brutolu. During the arrest, the substance used to drug the victims was successfully retrieved. The suspect has claimed to work for an unidentified master and has pledged cooperation in capturing the gang leader.

“After months of persistent investigation, the Rivers State Police Command successfully apprehended the gang leader, whose identity is being withheld for investigative purposes. As a result of this arrest, various items belonging to different victims were recovered, including 21 mobile phones, three female bags, and receipt booklets.”

The statement further noted that the gang leader had previously been arrested in 2021 for similar offences and was charged in court. The recurrence of such heinous crimes, it stated, underscored the importance of continued vigilance and proactive measures in tackling the menace of online criminal activities.

In a related development, the command said it arrested one Jenifer Timi, 28, who hails from Burutu in Burutu Local Government Area, Delta State.

The state police image maker said the suspect specialised in luring individuals through social media platforms such as Instagram, Tinder, and Badoo.

She said, “Notably, the suspect targeted not only women but also Bolt and Uber drivers by exploiting their expensive phones displayed online. The suspect invited victims to hotel rooms where they were offered drinks laced with Tramadol, subsequently subjected to rape, and robbed of their belongings.

“Jemifor Timi Collins has been engaging in these criminal activities for over three years and has been arrested and charged to court on two previous occasions. The ongoing investigation aims to uncover further details and bring all responsible individuals to justice.”

Iringe-Koko said the command under the leadership of the Commissioner of Police, Olatunji Disu, urged members of the public, especially youths, to exercise caution when making friends online.

“It is crucial to prioritise personal safety by meeting new individuals in safe and public places. Additionally, individuals should inform their relatives and friends about their movements for added security.

“The police remain committed to providing protection and raising awareness about emerging crimes and will continue to work tirelessly to ensure the safety of all residents.”

Punch

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept

Dental Implant