As the criminal activities of kidnappers thrives unabated, a new dimension, which is self kidnapping, is beginning to become popular. Nigerians are still grappling with the report of a clergy man who faked his own kidnap to extort money from his church members in Ekiti State and here comes another of such scoundrelly act of a middle age woman of late 30s who ‘kidnapped’ herself to extort money from her husband in Kogi State.
Kabba town of Kogi State was thrown into frenzy on Monday, 24 June, 2019 with the revelation that a woman whom was kidnapped eleven days ago and the whole town in searched of actually kidnapped herself to extort money from her husband.
Her staged kidnap was an unconventional one! She was reported to be sweeping outside her house around 5:30am on that fateful day with only wrapper tied when she was kidnapped.
In what seemed a lone job, hours after she had been supposedly kidnapped, she sent a text message to her husband with her telephone line that she had been kidnapped. Later, she called to corroborate her earlier text message that she is in the hand of kidnappers.
Then began the real negotiation, but not before putting her husband, family and friends through three days emotional wreck of no communication.
As her family members, whom were totally in confused state, had come to accept, the kidnappers unusually negotiated through her and used her telephone line to communicate her people.
A such, she called, on the third day, that the ‘kidnappers’ are demanding for five million naira.
The negotiation lasted for days, with her family members haggling it until the ransom price got to one million naira, where she told her people that the kidnappers said they could not go below.
Meanwhile, occasionally, during some of her calls, she faked cry from torture, with words like, “please don’t beat me, my husband is yet to get the money he is expecting.”
After running around, the family was able to raise two hundred thousand naira. When the ‘kidnappers’ called through her, as usual, the family told the kidnappers the amount they had been able to raise thus far. she called back later to let them know that the ‘kidnappers’ were furious and would not take the amount. But that the kidnappers said the family can go ahead and deposit that amount for a start.
When the family sort to know where the money will be dropped, she said the kidnappers said they should deposit it in her account, that they know how to retrieve it.
As they say, the man with the gun is the boss, so the family did as ordered.
The reason kidnapping crime is difficult to bust is because no family wants any of its member to be killed when it can go an extra mile to save such life. And so the husband went extra mile to source for another five hundred thousand naira.
He was able to get the money on Friday, 21 June, 2019. Armed with the money, the ‘kidnappers’ were again contacted to enquire how to get the money across. Again, the ‘kidnappers’ speaking through the kidnapped woman said the money should be deposited in her account.
As it was, time was of the essence, the bank had closed as at the time the money was ready.
In distress, the family rushed to the bank to confirm if there was any help that could be rendered to transfer the money.
While plea was still ongoing with the bank officials, a text message came in from the kidnappers telling them not to worry, that the payment could be left till on Monday.
Amongst those doing the running around was a younger brother to the husband. The text message pricked his intuition and he immediately excused himself.
He went and got telephone call tracker and the investigation began.
They called the kidnapped woman number and tracked it to Ilorin, Kwara state capital. Same younger brother took off to Ilorin, went to a police station and narrated the details.
Police swung into action and with the aid of a tracker, they were able to track the ‘kidnappers’ telephone call to the kidnapped woman’s elder sister’s house in Ilorin.
Police arrived the house and knocked, the door was locked and there seemed to be none at home. When enquiries were made from neighbours, they said the occupant of the house had traveled for over a week.
The police, however, got a break with a neighbour who said she saw the occupant’s younger sister arriving on the day she left, but she would not know if she had also left the house.
Apparently, that was all the police needed to hear. Reinforced, the police tried the more to see if there was someone in the house, but there seemed to be none. It was said that they even teargassed the environment in a bid to smoke the occupants out, yet, there was no sign of life.
Then the police decided to play it the waiting game. They kept watch of the house from Saturday, waiting for the occupant to slip.
Then came the slip on Sunday. A water seller, who, apparently was called to supply the house water, dropped the water and went to the back of the house to collect money as must had been directed, and phew, the supposedly kidnapped woman was apprehended by policemen!
As at the time of writing this piece, the elder sister, whom the ‘kidnapped’ woman must had been hand in glove with, is still at large.
ACEGIST investigation found out that the husband, who should be closer to seventy than sixty, married the woman few years back after staying single for over a decade following the loss of his wife.
It was also discovered that the man was expecting some money, hence, his wife’s means of getting a slice, and possibly a chunk of it.
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