33 nabbed for carrying out jungle justice in Lagos
The Lagos State police command yesterday said its operatives have within the past one month arrested 33 for acts of jungle justice. The command also arrested 24 armed robbers and 15 cultists and gangsters.
The command’s boss, Fatai Owoseni, said his officers recovered 15 arms, 10 ammunition and 16 stolen vehicles across the state in different operations.
Out of the arrested suspects were four policemen who were nabbed and summarily dismissed for acts ranging from unlawful arrests and extortion, as well attempted murder and robbery.
At a press briefing held at the police officers mess in Ikeja, Lagos, where the suspects were paraded before newsmen, the state police boss, Owoseni, gave the highlights of the arrest.
On the 33 suspects who were arrested for jungle justice, Owoseni said there was no justification for killing people without recourse to the law.
He said: “On August 8, a distress call was received at Ijaye Ijokoro police station that some people suspected to be ritualists/kidnappers were seen hiding in a canal at Obadeyi bus-stop along Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway. The DPO led a team of policemen to the spot and on getting there, they met a large violent mob trying to lynch the suspect.
“As the policemen were trying to rescue the alleged suspects, the crowd descended on them, beating and throwing stones at them. In the process, properties were vandalised and 33 suspects were picked up at the scene.”
At the weekend, a mob burnt two persons to death in Mushin and Agbado Ijaiye for alleged child abduction and phone theft. The suspected kidnapper was killed at Cele in Agbado Ijaye; while the suspected phone thief was lynched in Mushin. He allegedly stole a Samsung Galaxy phone valued at N45,000.
In a video circulating on the internet, the late kidnapper was heard confessing how he abducted children before selling them for N30,000 each. He said he kidnapped and sold four children for N120,000.
Worried by the rising incidence of jungle justice in the state, Owoseni said there was no justification for killing people who should be handed over to the police. “The public is advised to report any suspicious happening in their areas and they are assured of the renewed commitment of the police and other security agencies to prompt response to such reports.
“The general public is strongly advised to desist from this unlawful and barbaric act. No effort will be spared in ensuring that lawful means are used to bring to justice, anyone who violates the law.