Cleric Arrested For Impersonating A Kidnapping And Demanding Ransom From Members
Pastor Albarka Bitrus Sukuya has been detained by the Plateau State Police Command for planning his kidnapping with a group of accomplices and collecting ransom from sympathetic churchgoers.
The Command said that the cleric who resides at Jenta Apata in the Jos North local government area of the State had faked his kidnapping and committed other atrocities numerous times in a statement signed by its spokesperson, DSP Alfred Alabo.
It stated that his fictitious captivity on November 14 and November 30, 2022, for which ransom payments of N400,000 and N200,000 were made by his members in exchange for his release, led to suspicion of his actions.
The Nassarawa Gwong Police Station’s DPO, CSP Musa Hassan, invited the cleric based on reliable intelligence, and the investigation got started right away.
“During the inquiry, it was discovered that the suspect and his gang had been planning to orchestrate the kidnapping of the victim and fraudulently demand ransom.
During questioning, the suspect admitted to committing the murder and named Baruk Mailale, and Nathaniel Bitrus, both men from Yelwan Zangam village in Jos-north, and Aye from Jalingo in Taraba State as his collaborators, according to the command.
In the statement, the suspect also admitted that on January 4, 2023, he destroyed two cars (a Mercedes Benz and a Toyota) and a bicycle that belonged to his coworkers who were parked at the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) Bishara 3 Jenta Apata premises, one of whom he claimed hated him, referring to his senior pastor.
The command further stated that Baruk Mailale and Nathaniel Bitrus, two of the suspects, had been apprehended by police officers from the Nassarawa Gwong Division, Jos North Local Government Area and that more effort was being made to apprehend Aye, the third suspect.
Therefore, it urged the public to exercise caution and promptly report any suspicious activities occurring in or near them. It added that doing so would considerably aid in the capture of criminals and assist lower crime and criminality in the state.