Police authorities say theu have apprehended a kidnap suspect, Ayobamidele Ayodele, for allegedly abducting a six-year-old pupil of a private school in Ojo area of Lagos.
Ayodele was was said to have been tracked down to his father’s residence at Mowe, Ogun State, days after he released the boy after having collected N550,000 ransom from the victim’s family
23-year-old Ayodele was said to have gone to the school around 9am on November 6, 2020 and posed as a parent trying to make enquiries on requirements for enrolling a child in the school.
While he was waiting at the school gate, he reportedly beckoned to Ebube Eze and tricked him into following him to a waiting motorcycle.
A source said that some family members were waiting at Ajangbadi junction where the suspect had promised to release Ebube when he put another call through demanding N2m with a warning for them to pay up if they wanted to see his son alive.
After negotiating for four days, the family reportedly transferred N400,000 to two bank accounts provided by the suspect and Ebube was released.
Afam, who added Ayodele’s number to his WhatsApps' contacts, saw a photograph on his (the suspect’s) display picture section and showed his son, who confirmed the image was that of his abductor.
A police source said; “The IRT detectives at the South-West annex were able to track down the suspect in his father’s house at Mowe. He confessed to the crime and took police to the lounge where he kept the boy for four days. The lounge manager said they were worried when he stayed with the boy for days but he claimed that he was the father of the child,”
Ayodele, a secondary school leaver,revealed to the police that he learnt kidnapping from Nigerian movies, claiming that he lured Ebube out of the school on the pretext that he would buy him gifts.
He said, “I used to hustle at Alaba International Market. I decided to try out some of the methods used to kidnap children and adults in movies. I started by visiting several schools around Ojo to see the possibility of picking children without anyone noticing.
"I decided to try my luck on November 6. I visited one school close to Alaba International Market and stayed by the gate. I saw a teacher passing by and she asked me what I was doing there. I was about to respond when she asked if I wanted to register my child in the school. I said yes and she told me to wait.
“She came back a few minutes later and gave me a form. She also gave me her phone number and asked me to return with the child in January. As soon as she left, I hung around a bit and noticed two kids coming to the school. The boy was holding a cane. I took the cane from him and he told me he bought it on his way to school.
“I asked him to drop his bag in the classroom and come back to show me where he bought it. I whispered into his ears that I was going to buy many things for him and told him not to tell his sister. He agreed. He went inside, dropped his bag and came out.”
He said he convinced Ebube to mount a motorcycle and they headed for Alabarago junction.
He stated, “I gave him my phone that had a lot of games in it and he was so excited. I immediately called that teacher and told her that I abducted a pupil. I asked for N200,000 ransom and they begged to pay N150,000. I sent an Access Bank account to the child’s father and he paid the money.
“I felt that I could get more money from the family since N150,000 was easy for them to pay. I took the boy to another area called Magbon and demanded N2m from the father. I bought ice cream, chicken and other things for him and assured him that I would take him back to school.”
To avoid suspicion, he said he asked the boy to call him daddy as he took him to the lounge in the Ilogbo Eremi area of Lagos, where they lodged in for four days before the family paid N400,000.
He added, “The boy stayed calm except once when he told me that his mummy would be angry that he came home late. I assured him that it was his parents who asked me to take him along. I made sure he had access to my phone and he played the available games. I am so sorry that I caused the family much pain. My parents trained me well. I was just impatient and greedy.”