The Police in Imo State on Wednesday said it has arrested one of the notorious IPOB/ESN Commanders, a deserter from the Nigerian Army, Lance Corporal Nwangwu Chiwendu aka “Onyearmy” ‘m’ aged 34 years, a native of Amaohuru Nguru in Aboh Mbaise LGA of Imo State, who has been on the Command’s wanted list and was being trailed for a long time.
Disclosing this in a statement, made available to DAILY POST in Owerri, the Police Public Relations Officer, Imo State Police Command, Micheal Abattam said the suspect, whose modus operandi is unleashing surprise terror attacks and going into hiding in neighbouring States was arrested, on 23/12/2022 at about 1030 hours in his home town, Amahohuru Nguru in Aboh Mbaise LGA during the late father’s funeral.
According to the police,” The suspect who sat on a vantage position while his members were on surveillance, on sighting the police operatives, they took to their heels, engaging the Operatives in a shoot-out, using the crowd as a shield. The gallant Police Operatives, retaliated, professionally and tactically to avoid bullets hitting innocent persons in the crowd.
“He was later arrested after a long chase alongside two of his gang members with bullet injuries while others escaped. Amazingly, he did not sustain any bullet injury; this he attributed to the charms worn all over his body he called “Odeshi” meaning native bulletproof.
It added that on searching the house and premises of the suspect, ex-Lance Corporal Nwangwu Chiwendu the following items were recovered: Five (5) GPMG guns; Four (4) cut to size double barrels; Five (5) pump action guns; Three locally made bombs. Nineteen (19) rounds of AK47 live ammunition.
Other items recovered include, Fifty-two (52) live cartridges; Fourteen (14) teargas live canisters; Two (2) police handcuffs; Four (4) safety desert boots; Various vehicle pate numbers; Seven (7) Police Belts; Numerous registered INEC Voters Card from INEC offices; Three (3) ESN flags.
” In the course of interrogation, the terror Kingpin confessed to having enlisted into the Nigerian Army in 2013, where he trained as an engineer and became an expert in weapons handling and servicing of all heavy automatic weapons.
The police spokesman further said,” he rose to the rank of Lance Corporal before he deserted the Army and joined the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its arm affiliate, Eastern Security Network (ESN) through one Ebubechukwu surname unknown and became the Operational Commander and Chief Trainer of the Outlawed group where he claimed to have trained over one thousand members in weaponry and terror attack in their Camp located in Ogbotoukwu, a forest, in Obowu LGA of Imo State.
“He further confessed to having participated and led in several vicious killings of security personnel, attacks on INEC offices, burning of Police stations, murder of innocent people, armed robbery/kidnapping, and terrorism and narrated how on 30th May 2021, they murdered the late Armed Gulak, the former political adviser to former President Goodluck Jonathan.
“He confessed that he led the operation and they double-crossed and stopped the Toyota Camry Taxi car that was taking him and his friend to the airport and ordered them to come down, shot him but the bullet did not penetrate his body, so he went to him removed the rings on his right fingers, shot and killed him along airport road. ”
Other killings he led include, the recent killing of the Labour Party Senatorial candidate, and the burning of his house and Jeep.
” He led his gang members including one Okechukwu Duru and others, to kidnap one Jude Nwahiri on the 4th of November 2021, collected ransom of 21 million naira (N21,000,00.00) after killing four persons in the residence of the victim at Amaohuru Nguru in Aboh Mbaise LGA, Imo State.
“The murder of the traditional ruler of Amaohuru Nguru Aboh Mbaise LGA, Imo state HRH Eze Anthony Anyanwu on 10/12/2021.
“The murder of a native doctor in Amaohuru Nguru, Uzodimma Ahaiwe on 25/12/2021. Police said an investigation is ongoing and the police operatives are working in synergy with the military and the community to arrest the fleeing members of the terrorist group.
” The Commissioner of Police, Imo State Command, CP Mohammed Ahmed Barde while commending the gallant officers and men expressed his appreciation to the residents of the community for their support.
“He then advised them to continue to assist the police with credible information and report to the nearest police station any person seen with bullet wounds. “