By Ngozi Uwujare
His name is Innocent Onwusereka. He describes himself as a medical doctor and even owns a hospital in Imo State. But the 60-year-old man is nothing but a fake doctor who parades a forged certificate and whose major business is kidnapping and child trafficking, it has been discovered. Onwusereka and his gang have been involved in the kidnap and sale of several children, according to the police.
‘Dr’ Onwusereka recently met his waterloo as he was, on June 20, arrested along with members of his syndicate by the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the Imo State Police Command. Arrested with him were Kingsley Ehiebu, 36; Blessing Eze Ehiebu, 24, Ada Olua, 68 and Obiageri Nwaejesi, 40.
Imo State Commissioner of Police, Mr Abutu Yaro told Saturday Sun that Innocent, with his syndicate member, Kingsley Ehiebu kidnapped two little siblings -Chukwuebuka Ossai, 4, and Oluomachukwu Ossai, 3, at Ngwo Step, Enugu. Kingsley Ehiebu and his wife, Blessing, on May 19 re-located from Enugu State with the kidnapped children to Awo Mama in Oro East Local Government Area of Imo State.
CP Yaro said the victims’ father, Johnson Ossai suspected Kingsley and reported the case at the Enugu State Police Command. It was gathered that the Imo State Police Command was briefed on the matter, and the state’s Anti- Kidnapping Unit Commander and his team were ordered to go after the kidnappers.
“Through credible intelligence, they stormed the suspects’ hideout at Ubachim Awo Omamma and arrested the suspects on June 20, 2021,” the police boss said.
In an interview with Saturday Sun, the prime suspect, 60-year- old Innocent Onwusereka, who hails from Uba Chima, Oru East L.G.A of Imo State, explained his foray into the world of crime.
His words: “I have been involved in kidnapping, abduction and stealing of children for over five years. I am a fake doctor. I got admission to the University of Jos in 1980 in the medical faculty to study Medicine and Surgery. I dropped out in 1988 with my fake results. I quickly went and opened my own hospital called Unity Hospital in Awo Mama in Oru East L.G.A. I employed some doctors who work under me and I pay them.
“Later, I ran a motherless home where I recruited syndicate members from Anambra and Imo States who come with stolen children and sell them to me for N400,000 and at times, N500, 000 each. I admitted a pregnant lady in my hospital to enable me to buy the baby after delivery and later settle the mother of the baby. I have sold over 10 different babies in my hospital and I was arrested by the Rivers State Police Command for kidnapping and child trafficking, as well as stealing of babies. I then stopped operating the motherless baby home.
“I am married with five children. In May, one of our syndicate members, Kingsley Ehiebu kidnapped his neighbour’s two children and immediately relocated from Enugu State to Imo State and handed over the two children to me on May 19. We agreed to sell the two children, Chukwuebuka Ossai and Oluomachukwu Ossai. I took them to my sister, Mrs. Ada Priscilla Oluaha at 27, Ngokpaha Street, Owerri so as to hide the two children there plus one Ugonna Okerie Ruth.
“Kingsley and I planned to sell the kidnapped children for one million naira. Then the police stormed my house on June 20 and arrested me. I took them to my sister’s house where the police operatives discovered the kidnapped children.”
But it wasn’t the first time he would be arrested, he confessed. “I was arrested by the police in Rivers State in 2019 when I sold a baby boy for N600, 000. Earlier in 2017, the Imo State Police Command arrested me through the State Criminal Investigation Department when I sold a baby girl for N600, 000, but later the baby girl was recovered and handed over to her parents. In 2017, Imo State Police Command State Criminal Investigation department arrested me again for sell- ing a baby boy in my hospital for N400, 000 and I was granted bail. After that, I stopped the motherless babies home. Then I was arrested again on June 20, 2021 by the Anti-Kidnapping Unit of the Imo State Police Command.”
Kingsley Ehiebu also spoke with the reporter. Said he: “I hail from Okpofie Olua Agbor in Ika North East Local Government Area of Delta State. I was staying with my wife and one child. I live in Ngwo, Enugu State where I kidnapped two children of my neighbour, Chukwuebuka and Ossai right from their mother’s shop. I took them to Shoprite and bought them meat pie and ice cream. My wife and I immediately relocated from Enugu State to Imo State with the two kidnapped children. I quickly took the two children to Dr. Innocent Onwusereka and we bargained to sell them for one million naira. I was expecting my own share when the police operatives came on June 20, 2021 and arrested me and my wife in my house. I took the police operatives to Dr. Innocent Onwusereka’s house and he took us to his sister’s house where the children were recovered.
“I have been involved in several kidnappings and my syndicate members are in Lagos State and Imo State. I regret kidnapping my neighbour’s children,” he stated.
Also speaking, Ada Priscilla Oluaha said: “I hail from Oru East Local Government Area of Imo State. It was my brother, Dr. Innocent Onwusereka who brought the two children to my house. I didn’t know that they were kid- napped. I was feeding the two children. It was on June 20, 2021 that Dr. Onwusereka came into my house around 3:30am and told me to open my door and he told me that they came to collect the two children. It was then that I was arrested.”
Commander of the Anti-Kidnapping Unit in the state said the police also recovered a bag containing the sum of N200, 000, one Airtel sim card, a nose mask, three different bunches of keys and six G.S.M phones from Kingsley Ehiebu’s house. He said his unit also recovered one Ugonna Okorie Ruth, 4, from Onwusereke’s hospital.
The police commissioner, Yaro said the kidnapped children had been handed over to their parents. He warned all criminals who indulge in child trafficking and kidnapping to relocate from the state, even as he assured that the suspects would soon have their day in court.