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Navy raid brothels, rescues 50 teenage prostitutes in Port Harcourt

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Navy raid brothels, rescues 50 teenage prostitutes in Port Harcourt
…  As Police arrest couple for alleged human trafficking in Ogun***

The Nigeria Navy says it has rescued 50 prostitutes and arrested three suspected sex traffickers during a major raid on two brothels in Port Harcourt.

Lt.-Cdr. Richard Iginla, Base Information Officer, Nigerian Navy Ship (NNS) Pathfinder, paraded the suspects and rescued victims before newsmen in Port Harcourt on Sunday.

Iginla said the operation was carried out in collaboration with the Nigeria Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).

According to him, the 50 prostitutes, mainly teenage girls were rescued in the early hours of Saturday after a tip-off from NAPTIP.

“We got the intelligence from NAPTIP, who had been tracking the brothels that camped juveniles with some of them as young as 14 years of age.

“So, after NAPTIP shared intelligence with us, a joint team was set up and we immediately went into action to rescue the victims.

“No fewer than 50 young girls forced into prostitution were rescued while three recruiters and operators of the brothels were arrested,” he said.

Iginla said the brothels; Royal Brothel and Cool Breeze Brothel both located on Azikiwe Road in Diobu area of Port Harcourt had been shut down.

He said that efforts were ongoing to trail and arrest the leaders of the sex trafficking ring, who recruits children from villages into prostitution.

“Children are gifts from God, and we must do everything humanly possible to protect them from all forms of abuse and exploitation.

“The Nigeria Navy will continue to collaborate with relevant agencies to bring to justice criminal elements that traffic persons either on land or through the waterways.

“On conclusion of our investigation, the suspects and victims will be handed over to NAPTIP for further investigation and possible prosecution,” he added.

Speaking, the Head of NAPTIP in Rivers, Mrs Nwa-amaka Ikediashi, said the agency would immediately rehabilitate the victims with a focus on reintegrating them back into the society.

According to her, the victims, mainly under-aged girls, would also partake in different phases of counselling, to ensure they don’t continue prostitution.

“NAPTIP, as the focal agency mandated to fight all forms of human trafficking and sexual exploitation, will conduct proper investigation, to ensure justice is served,” she promised.

One of the rescued minors, an Anambra indigene, said that she was trafficked from her village to work as a house help.

The victim said on her arrival in Port Harcourt in company of one of her kinswomen that she was forced into prostitution.

“One of my village women (trafficker) brought me and two other girls from our village with the impression that we are coming to serve in a hotel.

“Shortly after we arrived at the hotel, she (trafficker) went outside and collected money from one woman (brothel operator). That was the last time I saw her (trafficker).

“Later, the woman, simply known as madam, put us in a room and told us that we would work as Ashawo (prostitute),” she said.

The victim said she immediately refused to work as a prostitute but that after the operator threatened her with torture and starvation, she gave in.

“In a day I sleep with more than 10 men, and whatever money I make, I give it to my madam.

“We hustle by wearing pants to seduce the men. After admiring what they see, they (men) take us into the room; have sex with us and give us money.

“We do a daily account of any money we collect to our madam’s sister, who calculates and gives us our cut,” she added.

In another development, the Police Command in Ogun on Monday said it has arrested a couple, Godday and Ebere Samuel, for alleged human trafficking at Atan in Ota area of the state.

The Police Spokesperson in the State, SP Abimbola Oyeyemi, who confirmed this in a press statement in Ota, said that the couple was arrested on Oct. 17 for suspected human trafficking.

Oyeyemi explained that the suspects were arrested following a report lodged at Atan Ota Divisional Police Headquarters by one Adeniji Okikiolu, who reported that his 16-year-old daughter, Maria Adeniji, suddenly disappeared from home on Oct. 16.

He explained further that while a search party was organized to look for her, he was informed by someone that the missing girl was seen with Ebere the previous day.

“Upon the information, Ebere was invited to the station, but she vehemently denied ever seeing the missing girl on or before that day.

“Not satisfied with her plea of alibi, Ebere was subsequently detained at the station.

“But surprisingly, when her husband was contacted, the husband confessed to having taken the missing girl to somewhere in Lagos for onward transportation to Burkina Faso where she will be engaged as a maid to one of their associates.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that the couple has been into the business of human trafficking for some time now and that their accomplices are in Burkina Faso,” he said.

Meanwhile, the state Commissioner of Police, Lanre Bankole, has ordered the immediate transfer of the suspects to the Anti-Human Trafficking and Child Labour unit of the State Criminal Investigation Departments for discreet investigation and diligent prosecution.

 

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Clearing Agent Arraigned Over alleged N700,000 Fraud; Motorcyclist Docked Over Phone, Cash Theft

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Clearing agent arraigned for alleged N700,000 fraud

A 38-year-old clearing agent, Oladapo Popoola, on Friday appeared before an Ikeja Magistrates‘ Court for allegedly, fraudulently obtaining N700,000 to clear a Lexus ES330 worth N3.4 million.

The defendant, whose address was not provided, is facing a two-count charge of fraud and stealing.

He however, pleaded not guilty.

The prosecutor, SP Josephine Ikhayere, said that the defendant obtained N700,000 from one Mr Owoyemi Nafiu under the pretext of clearing the fairly-used car from the Apapa Port, but never did.

She said that the offences contravened Sections 314 and 287 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The Magistrate, Mr Lateef Owolabi, admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N150,000 and two sureties in like sum.

Owolabi adjourned the case until Feb. 23 for mention.

In another development, a 43-year-old motorcyclist, Kingsley Akunda, on Friday appeared before an Okitipupa Chief Magistrates’ Court in Ondo State, for alleged phone and cash theft.

Akunda, whose address was not given, is facing a three-count charge of felony, burglary and stealing.

The prosecutor, ASP Zedekiah Orogbemi, told the court that the defendant and one other still at large, committed the offences on Nov. 17, 2022.

Orogbemi alleged that the house at No. 22, Arikawe St., Okitipupa, in Okitipupa Magisterial District, was burgled by the defendant around 12.30 a.m.

He said that the defendant and others still at large, burgled the house of one Samuel Akinrodoye, and stole one Itel M15 android phone valued at N85,000 and N30,000 cash, totalling N115, 000.

According to the prosecutor, the offences are contrary to the provisions of the Criminal Code, Law of Ondo State, 2006.

Akunda, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The Chief Magistrate, Mr Chris Ojuola, granted the defendant bail in the sum of N100, 000 and two sureties in like sum.

He said that the sureties, who must reside within the court’s jurisdiction, must be on Grade Level 15 in the state civil service.

Ojuola ordered that the sureties must present evidence of two years’ tax payment to the Ondo State Government.

He adjourned the case until Feb. 7 for further hearing.

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Adamawa Violent Crimes: Police arrest 208 suspects in January, Recover AK47 riffles, locally fabricated guns

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Adamawa Violent Crimes: Police arrest 208 suspects in January, Recover AK47 riffles, locally fabricated guns

The Police Command in Adamawa says it has arrested 208 suspects in connection with various crimes in the state.

The Commissioner of Police (CP) Sikiru Akande, disclosed this at a news conference in Yola on Thursday.

Akande disclosed that 108 of the suspects had already been charged in court.

He disclosed that the suspects were arrested in connection with suspected Kidnapping, armed robbery, cattle rustling and other violent crimes.

According to him, seven AK47 riffles, seven locally fabricated guns, generators, and televisions among other exhibits, were recovered.

“Early this year the command renewed its commitment and designed a security template to deliver on the mandate of the IGP Usman Alkali Baba to leave a deepened legacy of Democratic system and credible electoral process in the country.

“From Jan. 1st to date, the command operatives carried out tactical and intelligence-driven patrols, raiding of criminal hideouts, rescue operations, stop and search operations, community policing, and engagement of stakeholders among others.

“These operations yielded positive results and a total of 208 suspects were arrested in connection with kidnapping, armed robbery, cattle rustling and other violent crimes, out of which 108 suspects were charged to court.”

Akande commended the government and people of Adamawa for the support and cooperation rendered to the command that yielded the success recorded.

He gave assurance that all the suspects would be diligently prosecuted upon completion of investigation.

“Those at large will equally be traced and made to face the wrath of the law,” he said.

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EDITOR’S PICK: Ayojimi, son of Popular Musician, Docked over alleged Wife Battery

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 Ayojimi Balogun, 33, son of popular “Juju” Musician, Queen Ayo Balogun, was on Thursday brought before a family court in Ikeja for allegedly beating his wife.

…Ayojimi pleads not guilty as wife appears in court with neck guard!***

 Ayojimi Balogun, 33, son of popular “Juju” Musician, Queen Ayo Balogun, was on Thursday brought before a family court in Ikeja for allegedly beating his wife.

Balogun, who resides at Oniru Estate, Victoria Island, Lagos State is charged with assaulting his wife by beating her.

Ayojimi pleaded not guilty to the charge.

The Prosecutor, Insp. Ajayi Emmanuel told the court that the defendant committed the offence on Dec. 30, 2022.

Emmanuel said the defendant allegedly assaulted his wife, Jennifer Balogun, 27, by beating her.

He said the offence was contrary to Section 170 and punishable under Section 172 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, Nigeria, 2015.

Defence counsel Semilore Oluwataye urged the court to grant his client bail in the most liberal terms and promised that his client would be present at all the court proceedings.

The Magistrate, Mrs I.O. Raji admitted the defendant to a bail in the sum of N50,000 and two sureties, who must be residents of Lagos State.

Raji adjourned the case until Feb. 16 for mention.

The complainant, brought by the staff of the Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Agency, appeared in court with a neck guard.

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