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Lekki Bank Robber Becomes Born Again, Says They had Planned to Get N100m from the Robbery

Fresh facts have emerged on where and how the recent bank robbery in Lekki area of Lagos was planned. On Thursday, March 12, at about 5pm, a gang of dare devil armed robbers had through the Lagoon water front on Admiralty way, Lekki, stormed a branch of First City Monument Bank located on the popular street.The robbers went on rampage inside the bank premises ransacking the vault, Automated Teller Machines and dispossessing several members of staff of their valuables.
After the movie-like incident, the bandits left in their trail five corpses, three of which were policemen.
Embarrassed by the raid, the state Commis­sioner of Police, Kayode Aderanti ordered the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the command to track the suspects. Days later, four members of the gang were tracked down and arrested by SARS team lead by SP Abba Kyari. They include Duke Odogbo, 39-year-old leader of the gang, Lawrence Kingsley, 31, Ebiworisuwo Tosan, 18 and Ekelemo Kuete, 30.

The suspects, who are all Ijaw boys from Ondo State, gave detailed confession of how the robbery was planned from a camp located in the creeks between Ogun and Lagos states known as Fatola
Also, a Honda Accord 2008 model, pur­chased by the gang leader with the proceeds from the robbery operation, blackberry Z10 phone, White Apple Iphone 5, a military Fez cap and 130 expended ammunition were re­covered from them.
Duke, the man who led the gang to Lekki, claimed that he was invited over to Lagos, to teach the boys in the creeks how to do oil bunkering. His words:

“I never knew that it had anything to do with robbery. I was broke and needed help since life had become hard in Warri. I called Vicar and Kakadu to help a friend. He asked me to come that life was better off in Lagos. He promised me to help me raise N500, 000. My intention was to help them improve upon what they had on ground because I knew that they were not making much money. 
When I got to Lagos, I took a bike from Agric bus stop in Ikorodu to a place they call Abule Oba which is close to the water. We boarded a boat and ended up in a camp called the Fatola camp. It was about 45 minutes ride and the camp is a world of its own. I knew that place existed but I never knew it was that big. They were using keg to move fuel but it was better off in Warri where we were using drums to move crude oil. In Warri, I had my own local refinery and was drilling directly from source but in Lagos they were vandal­izing NNPC pipelines. 
They welcomed me very well and gave me a special treat which include good food and women. After eating, I was called to join their meeting. It was then they told me that they are planning a bank robbery. It was then it dawned on me that Vikar intentionally invited me because of their planned attack.”
Although he claimed that he was not aware of the plan to rob a bank, he decided to assist them since he is more experienced.

“I needed money and this was an opportunity to make quick money with ease. I was initially worried because I have heard of how armed robbers were arrested in Lagos. They convinced me that Lagos has been peaceful for sometime and no one will be expecting them to strike. Most importantly, I was convinced because they assured me that every attention is on politicians. I asked them if they had good in­formation and they told me that they had sent several persons to enter the bank and study the environment. 
I was impressed and decided to join them since it is less stressful. I knew what it takes and since I have mastered the use of gun, I was asked to lead the team. 
The next day, being March 11, 2015, at about 12pm, we boarded two boats with 10 persons each, started our journey to Lekki. Because the area is swampy, it was difficult to move fast, so it took us the whole day to get to the island. We waited till about 5pm, when we were sure that the bank was through with the day’s work. There was much traffic on the road and we discovered that there is no way we will be in the bank without drawing atten­tion. I advised them that the best thing to do was to scare everyone. 
Naturally, if you sud­denly hear the sound of gunshot, you will run for your life before even thinking of picking your phone to make distress call. Since we were dressed in military uniform it was easier because people will assume that we are solid­ers who decided to rob a bank. We also started shooting so that people will abandon their cars and run making it difficult for any daring po­liceman to come closer. We started shooting while I moved into the bank with one other person”, he added.
Just like they predicted, the security men who were not on alert, fled the scene long before the robbers arrived. According to him:

“The security men on duty fled when they heard our gunshots from a distance. I was not ready to beg anyone to open the door so I shot at the door and we moved in. We did not kill anyone in the bank because they co-operated with us. I was surprised that the manager man­aged to escape unnoticed. 
One of the staff, a man took us to the vault and we collected the whole money there. We also moved over to the ATM house and cleared part of it. I felt we had gotten enough, even as I was told that the manager left with all the foreign currency in the bank. The operation took us about 15 minutes to execute and we were on our way back. It was on our way back that I discovered three new rifles. I asked them how they man­aged to get them and they told me that they belonged to three policemen that were killed at the scene. 
I was so angry with them for coming along with the gun. I knew the implication. My uncle who was once killed and his rifle taken was dismissed even in death. I was dis­appointed that they killed those policemen. Their excuse was that they were at the scene and was a major threat. I felt terrible when I heard on TV that an innocent girl was also killed in the process,” Duke narrated.
Back to their camp, the gang quickly counted the money and discovered that it disappointed when it was discovered that the only money we got that night was N15million.

If I had entered the bank alone, maybe they will assume that I took part of the money. I was given N500, 000 as my share of the deal. This was so because there were so many persons in the camp and they all got their own share of the money. They behave like a community and I was told that they are all under an oath of secrecy. That very night, it was all over the news, they gathered in groups cel­ebrating the incident and laughing. I felt bad because of those policemen and little girl that were killed. Normally, I do not kill in an operation unless in self-defense. 
On Thursday, March 13, 2015, I left the camp and trav­elled back to Warri. I even bought a newspaper that published the robbery. I was amazed at the report and then very happy that I am a star. They were talking about an incident that I personally supervised. I also formed the habit of storing news­papers that featured my exploit even in Warri. I laughed when politicians were accusing themselves because of our visit,” he said.
Back home and N500, 000 richer, Duke claimed that he spent the money to construct another local refinery in Warri.

 “With the money I got I went back to my bunkering business. It was the first supply that I made that I used to buy a car. I was able to supply about 300 drums of crude oil. I had moved on with my life when police came to my house in Warri and arrested me. I was shocked, it was then I knew that God had finally arrested me. It has never happened before, all the prob­lem that I had with security men was on bunkering and I have never been jailed because of it. 
I had no choice but to co-operate with the police. As soon as I was arrested and the policemen told me that they are from SARs Lagos, I knew it was time to give my life to Christ. I warned them in Lagos of the risk but they insisted that after the death of those policemen in Arepo, no security man dared to visit them in the creeks. I did not believe them, that is why I ran away immediately. To the glory of God, I have given my life to Christ. He is the God of second chance and I know that he will see me through. I know that I have failed my family but I did everything I could do to provide for my family,” he lamented.
When asked how he perfected his shooting skills, Duke said that every Niger Delta based militant knows how to han­dle guns.

“If you are into bunkering, the first thing is to go for training on self-defense. We have boys in Niger Delta whose job is to train people. It is a very risky job. Apart from security men, your fellow man can decide to kill you and take over your refinery”, he stated.
On why he did not embrace amnesty like the other mili­tants, Duke said that he was never a militant right from day one.

“We were happy when the President announced that he was granting amnesty to the boys in the creeks. I tried to join the amnesty but because I was not with them in the creeks, they didn’t include me. I later travelled down to Warri where I learnt the business of steel and building engines. I was able to get a job that did not last for three years. 
Naturally, the only job available was oil bunkering. I went into it in full scale and I was able to raise money to marry my wife. It was one of the biggest in town. Although, we made so much money, it was not an easy job. You invest so much money mounting your personal drilling site and suddenly po­lice or navy will come and destroy everything. We spent so much on guns and building the refinery. For the past one year, they are no longer taking it easy with us and I could not afford to rebuild the local refineries. This was why I called Vikar to find a way out,” he said.
The second suspect, Ekelemo Kuete who was one of the drivers that drove the boat to Lekki claimed that his own share of the loot was N50,000.

“Every Ondo man must know how to swim and paddle boat. I was advised by my fellow Ijaw men in Lagos that life was far better here. Every man in Ondo who is into buying and selling fuel knows about Fatola camp. It is one of the most coordinated camps in Nigeria. They protect the interest of one another, and if you are arrested, they will pay lawyers to help you get bail. 
I immediately joined them in the camp last year when I relocated to Lagos. It is very easy to make money as a boat driver in that camp. The only condition is that you will take an oath and also pay dues to the leader of the camp known as Osy. 
On March 11, they appointed me to be one of the boys that will drive them to Lekki. It was Osy, the leader of Fatola camp that appointed me to join them. As the leader, he is not ex­pected to join any raid job; vandalization or robbery. Initially, it was Igbekorowa that was the leader in the camp but after the death of those policemen in Arepo, he was asked to step aside. Part of our rule over there is not to kill security men. If you do, the heat will be much. 
We live as a family and so far, the reign of Osy has been peaceful. I am even surprised that he approved that they should attack banks. I heard that the person who gave them the infor­mation assured them that the robbery will be very peaceful. We were all disappointed when they counted the money and it was only N15million. Everyone was expecting that they will come back with at least N100million. There was an informa­tion that one Mallam was bringing hard currency into the bank that day, Ekelemo said.
The third suspect, Ebiworisuwo Tosan, 19, who got N7,000 from the loot told Saturday Sun that he came to the camp to serve the leaders.

“It is the rule in the camp that once there is a successful raid, everyone in the camp must get a share. We are under an oath and our current leader Osy is doing everything possible to ensure that we are well taken care of. I do not have much doing in the camp, I will go to Ikorodu with kegs of fuel and sell,” he said.
He insists that the main reason why he decided to join oth­ers was to raise money to go to school.

“I have gotten an ad­mission to study Petro-chemical engineering. I wanted to get certificate so that I can get a legitimate work. My uncle told me that if I go to school, I will get a job in any oil company. I did not join them for any of their jobs because I am not old enough and has not gone for the regular training,” he said.
Lekki Bank Robber Becomes Born Again, Says They had Planned to Get N100m from the Robbery Reviewed by Jisieike Samuel on May 23, 2015 Rating: 5

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