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The Nigeria Police Force have warned against the recent disturbing trend of self-kidnapping (false kidnapping), which is a punishable offense under the laws, and cautions the public against engaging in such activities as there are legal consequences associated with this criminal act. This is following observed incidents of self-kidnapping in various locations, with suspects apprehended in Lagos and Abuja. In a press statement issued by ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, the Public Relations Officer, Force Headquarters Abuja warned perpetrators to desist from such act, as it is punishable under the Nigerian law.

Doubara David Yabrifa and wife Regina Yabrifa were arrested for self-kidnapping

In Lagos, a couple was arrested for alleged self-kidnapping scheme aimed at obtaining a N5 million ransom recently. The husband, Doubara David Yabrifa, a 53-year-old technician, and the wife Regina Yabrifa, a 48-year-old body massager and bone setter, were apprehended after a family member reported the purported kidnapping. The couple confessed to planning the self-kidnap to raise N3 million to purchase a property in Badagry, Lagos. The husband justified the act, citing financial difficulties and lack of support from relatives. Both were arrested and subsequently charged to court.

Another man arrested for staging his own kidnap

Also, one Albarka Sukuya of Jenta Apata, Jos, has been notorious for staging his kidnap on several occasions and received ransoms from unsuspecting members of the community in Plateau State. Similarly, on 20th January, 2024, a young man, Nnamdi Agu, faked his kidnap in Abuja in an attempt to defraud one of his family members who resides around River Park Estate, Abuja, to make money to pay for his personal pleasures. The Police, in a swift response, foiled the staged kidnapping, and arrested the suspect. It is obvious that the suspect and many others leverage on the prevailing instances of kidnapping and plan to engage in such criminal and deceptive acts of staged or self-kidnapping to make money.

These three (3) cases are a few of similar cases recorded in some states, that have been thwarted by the Police.

“The Force hereby cautions members of the public to be wary of this trend while those with intent to venture into these criminal acts should desist as the police will leave no stone unturned to cause such suspects to face the full wrath of the law.”

“Equally, we vehemently encourage the media and social media influencers, bloggers, etc., to constantly verify news before broadcasting such, not to create panic and jeopardize our security arrangements”, Adejobi concluded.

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