Three new suspects have been arrested at a suspected den of kidnappers and ritual killers in Obadeyi-Ijaiye end of Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway.
Two of the suspects, a woman and a man, allegedly disguised as mentally-challenged persons, but the latter was said to have later confessed to being a member of a kidnap gang.
It was learnt that three phones, an Automated Teller Machine card and two loaves of bread, were recovered in a bag found with the woman, while the man had some clothes in his bag.
It had been reported that the den, an uncompleted building, was uncovered around 8am on Tuesday after a highway sweeper with the Lagos State Waste Management Agency alerted residents to the voice of a distressed woman in a drainage channel in the area.
A crowd gathered around the two ends of the drains during which five persons came out through the channel.
Two of them were set ablaze by a mob, while three others were rescued by the police, while clothes, slippers and bags believed to be effects of abductees, were found in the building.
The state Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni, said it was too early to tag the building a kidnappers’ hideout, adding that “scientific investigations” would be carried out on the items.
It was not until around 10pm on Tuesday that he police succeeded in dispersing the crowd, which resumed in the early hours of Wednesday.
A resident, Bolaji Adams, told our correspondent at the scene that a mad woman was seen moving towards the drains at about 11am and people confronted her.
He said, “The woman should be in her 40s. She wore tattered clothes and had a bag. We saw her going towards the drainage channel. When we checked the bag, we found two loaves of bread, some pieces of fish, three phones and an ATM card. People did not even listen to her; they started beating her. Policemen intervened and she was rescued.”
Another eyewitness, Oluwaseun Aluko, corroborated Adams’ statement, adding that a man wearing wigs was caught about 30 minutes later.
Aluko said, “In my observation, the woman was taking the food to other members of the gang. What is a ‘mad’ woman doing with three phones? As we continued to watch, the man suddenly appeared around the drainage channel. Some people confronted him, but he was talking incoherently. We saw some clothes and used exercise books in his load. We decided to let him go.”