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Police raid ‘ESN camp’ in Enugu, discover corpse of missing officer


The Enugu police command says its operatives have discovered the corpse of a police officer at a hideout for suspected members of the Eastern Security Network (ESN), an outfit of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), in Igbo-Eze north LGA of the state.

The command said during a raid on the hideout located in Agu-Ibeje forest in Enugu-Ezike, a suspected member of ESN was killed.

Daniel Ndukwe, the command’s spokesman, in a statement on Tuesday, said its tactical squad and operation Restore Peace carried out an intelligence-driven dusk-to-dawn raid on the hideout between August 11 and 12.

He said several other gunmen escaped with varying degrees of gunshot wounds, while the corpse of an officer declared missing in July was found.

“The operation led to the discovery and exhumation from a shallow grave in the camp, the corpse of their male victim identified as Okpanachi Johnson, a Police Officer serving in Igbo-Eze North Police Division of the Command, who had gone missing on 30/07/2022, with all effort made to trace his whereabouts proving abortive,” the statement reads.

The police spokesman also listed the items recovered at the camp to include one AR-K2 assault rifle, six pump action guns, one locally-made berretta-like pistol and five locally-fabricated double-barreled guns.

Also reportedly recovered were 98 live cartridges, two machetes, one digger, one battle axe, one hacksaw, five motor vehicles, three Toyota Sienna minivans, one Honda Pilot jeep, and one Hiace (Hummer) bus, loaded with assorted Ankara fabrics.

Ndukwe added that 20 different brands of motorcycles with their number plates removed, one police bullet-proof vest, police camouflage uniform, military camouflage uniform with cap, military singlet, Biafra flag, and 22 different brands of mobile phones, were also found.

“In a related development, police operatives on August 8 at about 9:15 a.m. recovered two AK-47 rifles, all loaded with 64 rounds of 7.62mm caliber of live ammunition (currently in the custody of 82 division of the Nigerian Army),” he added.

“Other things recovered are one locally-made cut-to-size gun, one dane gun, one Lexus RX 330 and one RX 300 Jeeps, one Honda Pilot jeep, 25 machetes, two axes, one dagger, four phones, a military camouflage uniform, two forest uniform trousers and fetish items suspected to be charms.

“The recovery is sequel to the police swift response to a distress call alleging that IPOB/ESN terrorists invaded and set ablaze the house of a local vigilante at Oduma community in Aninri local government area on the date.”

Ndukwe said Abubakar Lawal, the commissioner of police, commended the officers for the successful execution of the operations.

The police spokesman added that the CP also charged the officers to remain focused on actualising the overall goal of ridding the state of unrepentant criminal elements.

He urged residents to remain law-abiding, vigilant and support the command with credible information to tackle crime.

“I enjoin individuals and owners of medical facilities to quickly report anyone sighted with gunshot injuries to the nearest police station or personnel,” he added.


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