Benue State Police Uncover Internet Fraud Training Centre, Arrest 31 Suspects

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Benue State Police Uncover Internet Fraud Training Centre

In a significant crackdown on criminal activities, operatives of the Benue State Police Command have uncovered an Internet fraud training centre, commonly known as a ‘yahoo yahoo’ academy, in Makurdi, the state capital.

This operation also led to the arrest of 31 suspected members of various criminal gangs operating within the state.

Parading the suspects on Tuesday at the Command Headquarters in Makurdi, the State Police Commissioner, Mr. Steve Yabanet, detailed the wide range of crimes the suspects were involved in, including Internet fraud, robbery, cultism, and kidnapping.

Mr. Yabanet explained that the discovery of the ‘yahoo yahoo’ training centre came after the police received information about the activities of internet fraudsters in Makurdi, particularly at Jerome Hwande Street, Akpa-Quarters area. Acting on this intelligence, police detectives launched an investigation, which culminated in a raid on May 14, 2024, at approximately 6 a.m.

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During the raid, 23-year-old Terpase Denmodi and 24-year-old Avalumun Ayangekaa were arrested. Items recovered from the suspects included seven HP laptops, one Apple notebook, a Canon printer, 15 notes of Ghanaian cedis, two international passports, and various other items.

“The suspects confessed to the crime, stating that most of their victims are foreigners and that they have students who are trained in the fraud business at the house. These trainees share the proceeds of fraud with them as they practice,” Mr. Yabanet revealed.

In addition to the internet fraudsters, the police also apprehended an eight-member gang of suspected fraudsters at a hotel in Makurdi and three members of a kidnapping gang operating in the region.

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The operation led to the dismantling of a kidnapping ring that had been terrorizing the Makurdi-Naka road. On May 6, 2024, the gang had blocked a section of the highway, robbing commercial motorbike operators and kidnapping a victim for whom they later demanded and received a ransom of N2 million.

One of the kidnapping suspects, 21-year-old Mohammed Ibrahim, was captured after a victim raised an alarm during the crime. Ibrahim confessed to the crime, stating that his gang usually kidnapped people along Naka road to extort ransom.

Commissioner Yabanet showcased various items recovered from the 31 suspects, including laptops, motorbikes, an AK-47 rifle, a large number of ATM cards, POS machines, a locally fabricated gun, phones, and other dangerous weapons.

The Police Commissioner assured the public that the crackdown on criminal activities would continue. He urged residents to provide the police with necessary information that could aid in the fight against crime and criminality in the state.



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