It was gathered that the men, suspected to be behind the abduction of four persons returning from a burial on the Nike-Ugwogo-Nsukka Road on Friday, were accosted at a checkpoint in front of the Isi-Uzo Divisional Police Station, Ikem, and huge sums of money suspected to be the ransom collected from the victims’ families were found on them.
The kidnappers had on Friday abducted a lawyer, two businessmen and a Catholic Reverend Sister.
However, three of the victims were reportedly released on Monday after undisclosed sums of money were paid as ransom, leaving behind one of the businessmen, Mr Anayo Ukwu, whose family could not raise the amount demanded on the day.
It was reported that the abductors contacted the families and demanded N5m ransom for each of the victims.
However, two of the suspected kidnappers riding on a motorcycle were reportedly flagged down at a checkpoint in front of the police station with a Ghana-Must-Go bag filled with huge sums of money and with some of the cash strapped to their bodies on Monday.
An eyewitness at Ikem narrated that the two men rode on a bike from Ugwogo to the Ikem junction, where they took another motorcycle to Eha-Amufu but were stopped at the checkpoint for a search.
The eyewitness, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “In the process, the policeman on duty at the checkpoint discovered that the men had so much money in the bag and money was also strapped to their bodies. The policeman was confused and went to call his boss inside the station.
“Before he could come back, the men had run into the bush with the money, but they were pursued across the Ebonyi River and up to the Umuaram community, where they were almost caught, but escaped with blood drops.”
Neighbourhood watch officers, who spoke with our correspondent on the incident, said that the police had been searching for the motorcyclist, who conveyed the suspects.
It was later gathered that the other kidnapped victim had been released after ransom was paid on Wednesday.
When contacted, the state Commissioner of Police, Ahmad Abdurrahman, and the Police Public Relations Officer, Daniel Ndukwe, did not take their calls.