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Six arrested as Police, suspected cultists exchange bullets near Onitsha

The Anambra State Police Command has arrested six suspected cultists and armed robbers after a gun battle that left one of the suspects injured at Ogidi near Onitsha.

The command’s Public Relations Officer, Mr Haruna Mohammed, made the disclosure in a statement issued in Akwa on Sunday, NAN reports.

Mohammed said one fabricated pistol, three live cartridges, an axe, tramadol drugs and some quantities of dry leaves suspected to be cannabis were recovered from them.

He said “On Dec. 14, at about 4pm, there was intelligence report at Ogidi Division that some suspected armed robbers/cultists were cited at Paradise Hotel, Ogidi brandishing dangerous weapons.

“Following the report, police detectives attached to Ogidi division rushed to the scene and cordoned-off the area.

“The gang on sighting the police locked the entrance of the hotel and engaged the police in fierce gun duel which lasted for more than thirty minutes.

“The police responded, but with high restraint in order to avert innocent civilian casualties.

“As a result, one of the suspects, Ugochukwu Okafor, sustained gunshot injuries on his buttocks while trying to disarm a police officer.”

He said the arrested suspects included four males and two females while others were at large.

He said that the injured male suspect had been taken to the hospital for treatment, promising that the command would continue investigations to arrest others.

Meanwhile, the command has warned against the use of knock-outs, fire crackers and other forms of fireworks in the state during the Yuletide.

Mohammed said such actions constituted serious security risks capable of misleading the security personnel on apparent danger of gunshots.

He also expressed concern that it could instill fear in the minds of the residents of the state.

“To this end, parents and guardians are advised to warn their children and wards from purchasing and using knockouts, as the law governing the sales, purchase and use of fireworks is still in force.

“Members of the public are equally enjoined to refrain from unauthorised use of sirens, tinted glasses and covering of vehicles plate numbers,” he warned.

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