By Dipo Olowookere
A senior staff of Access Bank in Port Harcourt, Rivers State has been apprehended by police for his alleged involvement in a foiled robbery attempt on the bank.
A statement issued on Thursday by spokesman of the Nigeria Police Force, Mr Donald Awunah, disclosed that the suspect was nabbed alongside his accomplices, which included security personnel attached to the financial institution.
Mr Awunah said items recovered from the “vicious armed robbers who specialized in bank robbery [include] “two AK 47 Rifles and magazines fully loaded with Ammunition, a welding machine, two gas cylinders and iron cutters, a big chisel, cutting saw, hammer and acetylene gas power.”
Police named suspects as Mr Samuel Ndudiri, ex-Sergeant Promise Ukwuoma, Samuel Nwala, Lucky Ukwuoma and Kaale Taagabah.
It was revealed that on December 22, 2016, the five suspects mentioned above and other still at large stormed a branch of Access Bank Plc in Port Harcourt, relying on information and active involvement of one of the staff of the bank, the armed robbers successfully broke down the well-fortified security doors and barriers and took over the banking hall.
“They were almost pulling down the vault of the bank and other strong rooms in the bank with use of gas cylinder welding machine and iron cutters before the joint Police Teams of IGP’S Intelligence Response Team and Policemen from Rivers state Police Command swiftly moved in and dislodged them, thereby foiled the armed robbery attack on the Bank and made a prompt arrest of three of the suspects at the scene; namely Samuel Nwala ‘M’ 28 years, Lucky Ukwuoma ‘M’ 26 years, Kaale Taagabah ‘M’ 27 years,” the statement said.
“In the course of thorough investigation into the foiled armed robbery attack on the bank, the principal suspect who is a staff of the bank and the master mind of the armed robber attack was subsequently arrested based on the confessional statements volunteered by the last three suspects arrested at the scene.
“The arrest of the principal suspect led to the arrest of Ex SGT Promise Ukwuoma who participated actively in the armed robbery attack on the bank, the two AK 47 riffles and the ammunition were recovered from him.
“All the suspects have volunteered confessional and useful statements to the police about the various criminal roles they played in the commission of the crime,” the police said.
However, it noted that concerted efforts are being intensified to arrest other suspects still at large and bring them to justice.
Police have promised to charge the suspects to court on completion of investigation.
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