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Police rescue 6 kidnapped children, arrest suspect posing as corps member

The Ebonyi State Police Command has rescued six kidnapped children from a child abduction ring and arrested female suspect posing as corps member.

According to a statement by the state Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Joshua Ukandu, shared on the command’s X account on Tuesday, “On January 21, 2024, one Nkwuda Francis reported to the command that a woman, initially identified as Mercy Francis, allegedly a youth corps member, had kidnapped two young children from his house in Nwezenyi Igbeagu, Izzi LGA, Ebonyi State after she rented a room in the compound.

The children, aged three and seven, were later found to have been taken by Ngozi Blessing Abia, which was revealed to be the suspect’s true identity.

“Following a diligent investigation by officers attached to the gender unit of the command, the suspect was located in Oba, Anambra State, where the children were rescued and returned to their family.

“In a related case, Lovina Iwuorah and Ndifereke wisdom Clement, mothers whose children had been similarly abducted in Ohaozara LGA of Ebonyi State, identified the suspect as the conspirator in the disappearance of their three children, aged between one and three years old.

“The investigation led officers to Benin City, where the children were found in an orphanage. The proprietor of the orphanage has been detained and is providing valuable information to the police.

“Additionally, Chinasa Uwezoke from Lagos, upon learning of the arrest, visited the command and identified the suspect as someone who had gained her trust and subsequently took her three children to the market, only to flee with her three-year-old son. The boy was later recovered and reunited with his family after being sold by the suspect.

“The suspect’s modus operandi is to rent an apartment, fraternise with her unsuspecting neighbours, gain their trust, and abduct their children for pecuniary gains.

The police command urged property owners and caretakers to thoroughly screen potential tenants, while advising parents to educate their children about safety and stranger interactions.

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