A pastor of Elohim Cherubim and Seraphim Church, Joseph Olude has been arrested for robbery in the Hunbe area of Ogun state.
The 45-year-old pastor was arrested alongside his church member, Rasak Raheem on Thursday, August 11 by operatives of the Zonal Intervention Squad of the Zone 2 police command, Onikan, for allegedly robbing in the Idiroko-Oke Odan area. Policemen were said to have swooped on them after they received information that a robbery gang was operating in the Idiroko-Oke Odan area, and dispossessing motorists of their valuables.
The police arrested the duo while other members of the gang fled. While parading the suspects at the state police headquarters on Sunday, the Zone 2 police spokesperson, SP Muyiwa Adejobi, said the Assistant Inspector-General of police (AIG), Abdulmajid Ali, had ordered a thorough investigation into the case.
He said: “The suspects operated along border areas of Ogun State, Benin Republic and even Togo. The ZIS operatives were detailed to the scene and they arrested the two suspects along Madoga Road between Nigeria and the Benin Republic.
“Effort is on to arrest the fleeing members of the gang,” the spokesperson added, noting that the police recovered one AK-47 rifle fully loaded with 30 rounds of live ammunition, and 15 extra AK-47 ammunition from the suspects. Olude, a father of five children, told newsmen that Raheem (his accomplice), came to his church for a special prayer. According to him, he did not know that Raheem and his friend, one Bidemi, were armed robbers and kept guns on the church premises.
Olude said: “I have five children. I was arrested when the police found five guns on my premises. It was my church member, Bidemi, who invited Raheem. “Raheem was brought into my church in February 2016, after he was infected with a Sexually Transmitted Disease. He also owed a house rent. “So, he came to live in the church. I did not suspect that he was bringing in stolen goods into the church’s premises.
I knew the time when someone came to collect a gun from him. “Bidemi usually dressed like a policeman. I did not know that he was a robber.
Now, Bidemi has fled,” the pastor stated. On his part, Raheem said the pastor was aware that some robbers brought guns to keep with him in the church, adding that the gang gave him (Raheem) N20, 000. The Abeokuta state-born told newsmen, “The pastor and I are friends. I went to his church and a man called Bode from Cotonou brought the guns.
I told the pastor that the guns were for safekeeping in the church and he said there was no problem. “About two weeks ago, Bidemi called me that he wanted to use the guns around the border area. I said he should bring N10, 000 when coming and he agreed.
“The robbers collected the guns and when they were done with them, they paid another N10, 000. I knew they used the guns to rob. It was a five-man gang,” Raheem hinted.