By Evelyn Usman
The Police in Lagos has arrested suspected leader of a notorious cult group known as ‘Berry Boys’ that has been on their wanted list, over violent crimes and rival cult clashes in the state.
The suspect, Maliki Bello, 22, who hails from Lalopun, Kwara State but resides at 23 Ayinla street, in Idiaraba area of Lagos state, disclosed during interrogation that he was initiated into the group when he was 12 years old and in Junior Secondary School 1, before he rose to become the group’s supreme leader.
He also revealed how members were recruited into the cult unknowingly.
He said, “The gang has an official Facebook page (Bbl Baloteli) with 1,928 friends. We use the Facebook page and other social media accounts to recruit new members, plan attacks and give updates to members”.
His confessional statement according to the Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Elkana Bala, led to the arrest of 11 additional suspects.
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Bala informed that, ” On February 4, 2020, at about 7.20 pm, following sustained monitoring, operatives from Itire Police station led by the Divisional Police Officer, SP Barkfur Kromkyes arrested one Maliki Bello, 22 years old, the supreme leader of the notorious Berry Boys Secret Cult with operational base at Itire.
The suspect confessed to being responsible for series of violent attacks, murders and armed robbery incidents recorded in Idiaraba, Lawanson, Dosunmu, Ashimowo Bakare, Omo-Bola Mushin and Itire.
“The Commissioner of Police Lagos State, CP Hakeem Odumosu, has further reaffirmed the commitment of the Command to address the menace of cultism and youth gangsterism in Lagos State.
“The onslaught on social miscreants launched by the Commissioner of Police is intelligence-driven, targeting mostly leaders of the gangs and cult groups and blocking channels through which they recruit young people. The Special Strike Force on Social Miscreants has successfully brought under control activities of various cults and gangs in the State through well-coordinated and targeted operations. The onslaught will be sustained until they are totally defeated”.