An 18 year old suspect arrested by the operatives of the Rapid Response Squad(RRS) of Lagos State Police Command, has disclosed that he ran away from auto engineering to pickpocketing because it was more.
The suspect, Seun Jimoh, 18, from Ondo State was arrested on early hours on Tuesday, in Oshodi while in the act.
The suspect, who decked in brown jacket and trousers, and a hand bag like a business executive,before his arrest, had already stolen four mobile phones from unsuspecting commuters in an early morning rush in the area.
It was learnt that he was about to remove N18,000:00 from the pocket of a commuter during another bus stampede when he was caught.
Unknowingly to him, two of his victims were on the lookout for him after suspecting him for being in custody of their missing phones. While standing at Oshodi under Bridge, they spotted him removing money from the pocket of a passenger, Gbenga Odeniyi. At that point, his earlier victims, Onuh Austine and Onesimus Paul raised an alarm, which made Jimoh to promptly drop the money and take to his heels but RRS operatives close to the scene chased and caught him".
The operatives after listening to all the accusations requested the victims’ phone numbers which were dialled and they were found in Jimoh’s handbag.
While at the RRS's Headquarters, the suspect confessed to have stolen the two phones during a bus stampede.
In his confessional statement, he said: On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, I am always in Oshodi pickpocketing. I stole an average of eight phones on Mondays and maybe like nine phones on Fridays. I don’t really get more than five phones on Wednesdays.
He added, " am an orphan. I was brought to Lagos by my uncle. He enlisted me in an auto – mobile workshop but I ran away from there to Mushin where I honed my skills in pickpocketing. All the phones that I stole, I sell them in Alaba Rago to some Hausas. They buy fairly used phones and materials from people. I have been in this business since 2013. I have never been caught or imprisoned before".
In his words, “nobody needs to train you on how to pickpocket. It is so easy and the idea came naturally to me. You can do it but you do the easy ones. I get to Oshodi by 6:30 a.m. and I leave after operations around 9:00 a.m.
I sell Nokia Microsoft N7, 000:00; Infinix Hot N8,000; Tecno Y series, N7,000 – N9,000 and small Samsung phones N4, 000:00”.
The RRS operatives later invited the owners of the two other phones found with Seun to collect them.
Our source disclosed that the Policemen are on the verge of arresting stolen phone buyers mentioned by the suspects, added that, one of the ways to stem cases of phone theft in the state is to pick-up the major buyers.
Confirming the arrest, the State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Superintendent of Police, SP Dolapo Badmus, re-assured people of Lagos, of maximum security in place in the state.
She added that the suspect has given information that would help track down his colleagues in the same trade as well as stolen phone buyers.
The suspect has been transferred to the Lagos State Taskforce on Environment for prosecution.