Crime Alert

July 6, 2017

Badoo killings: Estate agents dupe fleeing Ikorodu victims of N50m

Eyewitnesses, who recorded videos as the robbery was ongoing, said the gunmen shot the carriage open and carted away the cash inside.

File pho

…2 Badoo suspects set ablaze in Ogun

By Evelyn Usman & Daud Olatunji

ABOUT 150 residents seeking  accommodations at Iponri, Orile and Aguda, Surelere areas of Lagos, after fleeing from Ikorodu over fears of falling victims of Badoo members’ rampage, have been defrauded by estate agents to the tune of N50 million.

This is just like their Ikorodu counterparts in Lagos, a mob, yesterday, set two suspected members of Badoo gang ablaze at Ogijo, Sagamu Local Government Area of Ogun State.

One of the suspects, set ablaze at Magbo-Ogijo, was reportedly caught with a human skull, while the second victim was burnt few kilometres away from the scene of the first incident.

Ogun State Commissioner of Police, Ahmed Iliyasu, who was going to a town hall meeting in Ogijo, was forced to stop at the scene of the second incident, causing the mob to disperse. He alighted from his vehicle and ordered his men to pick the charred remains of the victim.

N50m rent money

Meanwhile, it was double tragedy for 150 residents of Ikorodu, who fled their abodes over fear of falling victims of Badoo cult, as they were allegedly defrauded of money paid as rent for accommodations at Iponri, Orile and Aguda, Surelere areas of Lagos.

At press time, the victims, comprising 100 families among them widows and their children, as well as bachelors and spinsters, were still at loss on what to do.

Some of them reportedly left their Ikorodu abodes to squat with relatives and friends, when the spate of killings by Badoo cult became unbearable.

A suspect, identified as Adeyemi, has been arrested by policemen attached to the Force Criminal Investigation Depart-ment, FCID, Alagbon, Lagos.

Vanguard gathered that over 200 prospective tenants were allegedly defrauded by the suspect, out of which 150 were fleeing Ikorodu residents. N50 million was reportedly collected from the prospective tenants.

Some of the victims claimed to have paid N240,000 for a room and parlour self-contained.

However, trouble started at the point of moving in, as some of them discovered that the apartments were already occupied by tenants, who claimed to have also paid.

Others discovered that keys of same apartments they paid for were given to over five tenants.

Lamentations

In an encounter with the victims, who stormed a non-governmental organisation, NGO’s office at Alaka Estate, Iponri, to lay their complaints, they lamented that they were stranded, as they had already moved their property out of Ikorodu and their relatives’ homes.

One of them, who gave her name as Mrs Johnson, said: “I fled my house in Ikorodu following incessant attacks from Badoo. An agent, who I contacted to help me get a place, took me to a house undergoing renovation at Mashalasi Street, Iponri.

“I saw a woman, Mrs Fumilayo, and one other man called JJ. Mrs. Fumilayo told me that she and her husband were the developers renovating the house. My agent and I inquired about a mini flat and she said it was N250,000 for one year.

“She told me to make payment into her bank account, which I did; I brought the teller to her and was issued a receipt.

“She told me to come back in June with the balance of N100,000 for agency and agreement fee. But when I got to the house, I was astonished, as the room I paid for had been taken over by another family.

“When I called her on the phone, her line was switched off. I also called her husband, but the Police picked his call and informed me that he has been arrested for defrauding some people.

“The Police told me to come and write my statement at Alagbon. When I got there, I saw over 100 people crying that they were also victims. Most of them are also from Ikorodu.”

Victim zero

Another victim, Linus Ejiofor, stated that he had been squatting with a family friend since he left Ikorodu two months ago, adding that he paid N200,000 for a self-contained apartment with a promise to pay the balance of N150,000 when he gets the key, only to meet another occupant in the apartment he paid for.

Some of the victims blamed Linus for introducing them to the agent that swindled them.

On his part, Goodluck, another victim, said: “I paid N260,000 for a room apartment. I got a notice to quit from my landlord, who said he wanted to demolish his house.

“I paid cash to one Mrs. Fumilayo Adeyemi and she gave me a receipt and told me to come back for my key. I have been calling her line, but she is not picking her calls.

“I decided to go to the house only to discover, to my shock, that people were fighting to occupy the particular apartment I paid for. Some of the people they duped also include security agents.”

Enter hoodlums

He continued: “As if that was not enough, thugs in the area took advantage of the situation and barricaded the house. Thereafter, they started collecting N50,000 from the tenants before they can be allowed inside.

“We had no option than to report at the NGO. We also protested to the Lagos State government office at Alausa, Ikeja, from where we were directed to the Ministry of Housing.”

Petitions to Abuja

Chief Executive Officer of the NGO, Barr. Ene Onobe, the Lagos State Government Office of Public Prosecution, on behalf of the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, in separate petitions to the Deputy Inspector General of Police Intelligence and Investigation, Force Headquarters, Abuja, also urged the police to thoroughly investigate the matter.

When contacted, the Deputy Commissioner of Police in Charge of Administration at the FCID, Alagbon, DCP Ozioko, confirmed the arrest, stating that a thorough investigation is being conducted on the matter.”

He added: “A lot of people are coming to report that they have been duped. We are conducting a thorough investigation and the suspect is in our custody.”