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UNICAL student arrested for kidnapping 17-year-old girl in Ondo



UNICAL student arrested for kidnapping 17-year-old girl in Ondo

Controversy surrounds the apprehension of Anthony Oscar, a 21-year-old University of Calabar student, accused of kidnapping 17-year-old Araba Joy Temitope, a student at Elibest College of Education in Oba-Ile, Akure, Ondo State’s capital.

Oscar was paraded at the Ondo headquarters of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) on Tuesday over the alleged abduction of the teenager.

Oscar was arrested after collecting N50,000 ransom to release the girl after she was declared missing, Mr Oluyemi Ibiloye, NSCDC Ondo State Commandant, made this known while parading the suspects and two others on Tuesday in Akure.

The commandant explained that the suspect collected N50,000 as ransom from the parents of the victim.

He also said the suspect was arrested on Feb. 17, at his residence in Calabar in Cross River State by the Tactical Team of the command.

Narrating the events that led to the arrest of Oscar, the NSCDC Commandant said, “On Jan. 30, 2024, a complaint of their missing 17-year-old daughter, Araba Joy Temitope, was reported at the NSCDC headquarters by Mr and Mrs Araba Alaba of number 24, Double Taiwo St., Ijoka in Akure.

Temitope (victim) was reported missing since Jan. 24, 2024 while returning home from her school, Elibest College of Education, Oba-Ile in Akure North Local Government Area of the state.

“On Jan. 30, the command issued a ‘Missing Person Statement’ to the press for whoever knows her whereabouts to contact the parents or the command at the contact numbers.

“On Feb. 6, seven days after the command’s press release, a phone number, which was later identified to be that of Oscar, contacted the parents of the missing girl that their daughter was in his camp for rehabilitation.

“And he (suspect) demanded for N50,000 to be sent to a Monie Point Microfinance bank account No. 8162041939 and that their daughter will be released,” he said.

Ibiloye insisted that Anthony, a resident of no. 31 Jordan St., Ikot Ishie, Calabar, Cross River, is a specialist in kidnapping of teenagers for ransom.

He said the command initiated a sting operation and instructed the victim’s parents to pay the said amount, explained that the mobile number of the suspect was tracked, and he was arrested.

The Commandant said that the suspect had confessed to the allegations and admitted receiving the N50,000 ransom, but has not revealed the whereabouts of the victim.

From investigations, the suspect, who is a 400 level Mass Communication student of University of Calabar, has various photographs of missing persons.

“He also has their families contacts on his phone suggesting that he is into kidnapping for ransom, fraud and cybercrimes.

“Investigation is still ongoing to unravel the location of the missing girl and to arrest his accomplices,” he said.

However, Anthony, who spoke with newsmen, confirmed his involvement in the crime, and said he only called the parents of the victim to dupe them.

“Actually, I was in my school in Calabar when I saw a post on my Facebook over a missing girl and phone number was attached to the post in which I called the number to demand for N50,000.

“And the N50,000 was sent to me and I never called the number again because I have never set my eye on the girl (victim) before or know her from Adam.

“So, I was arrested because I didn’t hide my phone number when I called the parents for money. I have never come to Ondo State before until I was arrested on Saturday in my house in Calabar,” he said.