‘We Were Forced To Join Robbery Gang’ – Teenagers
Two teenagers identified as Isaac Obong and Daniel James who were part of the robbery gang that robbed a petrol station in Calabar, have been arrested by operatives of the Cross River State Police Command.
The teenagers who were paraded alongside 50 other crime suspects by the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Hafiz Inuwa, robbed the filling station of N2m at gun point alongside other gang members still at large.
According to the State Police Commissioner, his men swung into action after receiving distress call from one Joseph Attoh, that armed robbers had raided his filling station. Three suspected robbers were arrested by the police on June 9.
He said, “On June 9, one Joseph Ogar Attoh (male) of number 26 IBB Way, Calabar, alleged that a gang of armed men came to his filling station at Mayne Avenue by Weber Street in Calabar to rob him of the sum of N2m.
“Three suspects were later arrested. They are Isaac Obong, Daniel James and Ofonime Ukpong. In a bid to recover the money and other incriminating items, search warrants were executed in their premises. The suspects have confessed to the crime and will soon be arraigned in court.”
The two 18-year-old boys, Isaac Obong and Daniel James, who spoke with Southern City News alleged that they were forced into the robbery operation. The teenagers further disclosed that Ofonime Ukpong, who was among those arrested was ill.
Obong said, “This is the first time I am going into big-time robbery. My parents are dead and I have been catering for myself all alone. We were recruited on the street to join in the operation.
“I was on my way back from work when they recruited me. I vulcanise tyres. We were not actually with guns, we were only asked to be on the watch out. We were caught while the other robbers with guns escaped. We were not given any money.”
James’ narration was not different, but he claimed that it was Obong who pointed him to the robbery gang.
“I lost my father some years ago and that was how I crashed out of secondary school. After dropping out, I am currently learning how to repair vehicle radiator. I had just returned from work on that fateful day and on getting home my mother said there was no food in the house.
“I went to my brother’s barbing shop to inform him of the situation at home but on my way back, this Isaac friend came with some people and they forced me to join them. They (the armed robbers) insisted that they would kill me if I do not join them. I had no option but to join them. This is my first robbery attempt and I was forced to join them.”