The string of events that led to the death of 35-year-old Christie Agbulu, a lecturer in the Department of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Benue State, sounded like one made for a scary movie.
But for over one month, the nightmare was real for Agbulu’s family, who waited endlessly with hope that she would be released safely after she was kidnapped in the evening of November 26, 2016.
Information from police investigators according to Punch Newspaper revealed how investigation led the police to the kidnappers’ ring leader.
The Newspaper reports that after the suspect was arrested, he subsequently gave the location of where the deceased’s body was found.
Recall SKYTREND NEWS had earlier reported that Christie Agbulu who was kidnapped in Lokoja, Kogi State on November 25, 2016 and had being in captivity for two months, was found dead inside a bush in Kogi.
Her decomposing corpse of the delectable lady was discovered by security operatives inside a bush in Lokoja.
The late lecturer was abducted after she left Makurdi on that fateful day to visit a friend in Lokoja.
That day, Agbulu had just alighted from a bus around 7pm, when an okada rider accosted her, asking where she was going.
She then told him the address that a friend, Levi Shemba, whom she was visiting had given her, indicating that she did not know the place.
The okada rider, who turned out to be one of the members of the syndicate who targeted people who are new to the city, told her to jump on.
“Unknown to her, the okada rider took her to a different location. It was through our investigation that we learnt that the syndicate had been operating as okada riders for a while,” the Public Relations Officer, Kogi State Police Command, Mr. Ovye Williams, said.
The okada rider was said to have taken Agbulu to a forest and demanded a ransom of N150,000, directing the family to pay it in the victim’s bank account. The family then paid N100,000 which her captors later withdrew with her ATM card.
“When we got a report of the kidnap, we entered the bush. The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Abdullahi Chafe, mobilised different units to comb the area. While we were doing that, we were tracking the phone number they were using to communicate with the family.”
For about a month after Agbulu’s kidnap, the police investigation got no breakthrough as the kidnappers changed location frequently in the forest to avoid being pinpointed.
Each time the police identified a location through tracking, the kidnappers would have moved.
Punch reports further that the police eventually got a break in the case. When they tracked Agbulu’s own line, which the kingpin of the syndicate had converted to personal use.
“We tracked the line and eventually located the suspect using it. When he was arrested by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad and identified as the gang leader, he then took our men to two other members of the gang.
According to Punch reports, the identity of the suspects are Nuhu Musa (29), Caleb Moses (28) and Sanusi Jibrin (33).
“The suspects confirmed that they belonged to the syndicate that kidnapped people in Lokoja. Anytime a stranger came to the town and did not know the location, they pretended to be okada riders looking for passengers.
“They then led the SARS operatives to where the body of the lecturer was found in a shallow grave along the Lokoja-Abuja Expressway. When the police got there, they realised it had decomposed.
During investigations, the suspects reportedly confessed to have kidnapped a second victim, Grace Ene Onaivi, an Edo State indigene and 300 Level student of the Benue State University.
Onaivi was declared missing on December 23, 2016 by her family members after they could not reach her.
The suspects told the police that they had kidnapped Onaivi exactly the same way Agbulu was abducted with a commercial motorcycle. They also dumped Onaivi’s body in the area where Agbulu’s body was found few days prior