Vandals arrested with stolen petrol in garri sacks December 5, 2013 by Comfort Oseghale

What is nigeria turning into? Everyday crime Comiters develop more skills when will nigerians uphold their dignity and integrity?

A fake soldier, identified as Emeka Kennedy, and four others, have been arrested for trading in petroleum products allegedly procured from vandalised Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation pipelines at Ijedodo, around Ijegun, Lagos State. The suspects, Udoji Rawlins, Kassem Jimoh, Rahim Wahab and Olufokpe Fatai, were arrested by operatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps on Friday around the Igando area in Alimosho LGA of Lagos State. The four suspects were said to be in three vehicles laden with the product. One of the vehicles, a commercial 14-seater bus, was loaded with 67 kegs of 25 litres, while the remaining two cars were loaded with 16 garri sacks (cassava flakes) filled with petrol. It was learnt that on closer inspection, it was discovered that the inner parts of the sacks had been lined with polythene bags to avoid leakage. Each bag was said to contain 100 litres of petrol. Kennedy, was said to have been arrested after he showed up at the NSCDC Lagos Command office the following day to bail out the four suspects who were said to have been transporting the stolen petrol. It was learnt that the suspects had, in their confessional statements, claimed that Kennedy contracted them to transport the petrol to a drop off point at Afolabi, Igando. The Lagos State Commandant of the NSCDC, Mr. Clement Adesuyi, said, “From our intelligence reports, we discovered that these pipeline vandals use about four routes to divert petrol, which have been stolen from vandalised pipes around Ijegun area. “The products are conveyed via canoes, through Ijegemo, where there is a river, down to Igando. They hide the products in garri sacks so as not to arouse suspicion. From Igando the products are then moved to waiting buyers in Alimosho, some of whom are petrol stations. “We have increased surveillance along the Cotonou route and if any fuel station is found buying petroleum products from these vandals, that station will be shut down. The NSCDC will also be liaising with the communities where these activities take place to get their cooperation to end pipeline vandalism.” PUNCH Metro gathered that at the time of Kennedy’s arrest, there was a camouflage cap in his vehicle, belonging to the Nigerian Army. It was learnt that Kennedy paraded himself as a soldier in the Badagry area where he lives. Kennedy said, “I am a trader; I move goods from Nigeria across the Seme border to sell. I later learned that fuel could be taken from Nigeria and sold in Benin Republic. I got interested in the business. “Although I knew my suppliers were not NNPC officials, I had no idea that the fuel was from vandalised pipelines. I never asked questions; once you have your money, they sell to you. We usually buy 50 litres of petrol at N3000 and sell at N5000.” Rawlins, Jimoh and Rahim told PUNCH Metro that Kennedy had contacted them to pick up some goods at a loading dock at Ebutekere, Igando. They had been reportedly promised N10,000 per trip if they drove the stolen petroleum products to Iyana Iba where some buyers were said to be waiting.


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