From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Police in Ogun State, on Thursday, stormed a shrine being used by fraudsters to swindle unsuspecting members of the public in Ijagun community, near Ijebu Ode and arrested four suspects.
The police in a joint operation with members of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) and the local Vigilance Group, stormed a forest where the shrine was located.
The operation followed a complaint lodged at a police station by a 26 year old lady, Imoleayo Ashade, who alleged that the four suspects defrauded her of a sum of over N1. 310m.
Police also seized a box containing fake international currencies which the suspects used to deceive unsuspecting victims in “currency washing” technique.
The suspects – Salau Taiwo, Ifakunle Adeyemi, Tajudeen Jimoh and Adebayo Akeem, were also said to be engaging in international currencies ‘washing’ which included Pound Sterlings, US dollars and European’s Euros, in addition to swindling their victims.
The Ogun State Commissioner of Police, Edward Awolowo Ajogun, while conducting journalists round the shrine, said that the suspects were arrested after their victim, Ashade had lodged a complaint at the Awa-Ijebu police division.
The CP explained that the victim was sometimes in December, 2020, accosted by two members of the syndicate and appealed to her for assistance because they were stranded and had nowhere to stay for the night.
Ajogun further explained that after successfully “hypnotising” and establishing friendship with the lady, the suspects later lured her into their hideout where they made her to swear to an oath of secrecy before duping her to the sum of N1, 310m.
Speaking with journalists at the shrine, Ashade, a Business Administration graduate from the Abraham Adesanya Polytechnic, Ijebu – Igbo, said the suspects lured her to believing that they could assist her with potent charm to boost her petty trading.
While assuring that the suspects would be charged to court after investigation had been concluded, the CP, however, reiterated that the state would not be a conducive place to carry out any form of criminal enterprise under whatever guise.
Items recovered from the shrine included a box containing various denominations of fake foreign currencies, assorted charms and the sum of N1, 310m which they allegedly collected from the victim fraudulently, while figurines and effigies were also spotted at various locations within the shrine.i