A wanted notorious cultist and an armed robber have been killed during a crossfire when operatives of the Rivers State Police Command uncovered a criminal hideout in a Rivers Community.
Nigeriacrime.com learned that the suspect, Silas Oderereke, has been on the wanted list of police for about four years.
The Police Public Relations Officer of the command, Grace Iringe-Koko, a Superintendent of Police, in a statement in Port Harcourt, noted that the police operatives invaded the den of the criminals in Oderereke community in Ahoada-West Local Government Area of the state and that on sighting the police operatives that the criminals opened fire, adding that General was brought down in the gun battle.
Iringe-Koko disclosed that two other suspected criminals sustained injuries while two of them escaped and are now at large.
She said: “In a breakthrough, the Rivers State Police Command successfully apprehended a notorious armed robber and cult leader, Silas Oderereke, in Oderereke, Ahoada-West Local Government Area.
“Oderereke, also known as ‘General,’ had been on the run for the past four years, evading arrest. However, his reign of terror came to an end when he resisted arrest and opened fire on the police, resulting in his death.
“As the head of the Greenlanders’ cult group in the Ubie clan of Ahoada West, Oderereke and his gang were infamous for their criminal activities, which included armed robbery, land grabbing, unauthorized sales of buildings, and brutal attacks on those who dared to oppose them.”
Iringe-Koko said the criminal gang rained terror on the people of the area, adding that they grab landed property, vandalise property, rob and kidnap at will.
She said: “The cult leader would even order the destruction of houses in communities that resisted his criminal enterprises.
“On January 11, 2024, the police received information about Oderereke’s gang’s robbery operation, which also involved vandalizing the property of the late monarch, Eze Robinson O. Robinson. Responding swiftly, the police chased the criminals out of town.
“However, the defiant ‘General’ rallied his gang and launched an attack on a community-owned tank farm in Oderereke, intending to loot its contents. It was during this sabotage attempt that the police managed to apprehend the gang.
“Silas Oderereke and one other member of his gang opened fire on the police team, leading to an exchange of gunfire. In the shootout, Oderereke and his accomplice were neutralized while others sustained injuries.
“Two other clan leaders, Danger-boy and 2-Man, who frequently collaborated with Oderereke, managed to escape and are currently at large.”
Iringe-Koko said the police recovered a G3 Rifle nineteen 7.62x51mm ammunition and other weapons and military camouflage.
She further noted that the Commissioner of Police, Olatunji Disu, congratulated the officers for their exceptional work and warned cultists in the state to abandon their criminal activities and renounce cultism, or face the full weight of the law.