A Bayelsa State High Court, Ogbia judicial division, sitting in Yenagoa, has sentenced to death by firing squad a 39-year-old man, Charles Nikson, for his involvement in the November 2020 thwarted abduction of Vivian Okoye, wife of a popular businessman and a medical practitioner in Bayelsa State.
Okoye, the wife of Obinna Okoye, popularly known as Blessed Obaino who owns the A-Z Electronics shops in various parts of Yenagoa, and a medical practitioner identified as Alex Ogregade Ileimokumo from Igbedi community of Southern Ijaw Local Government Council area, were rescued after a shootout with the men of the Operation Puff Adder.
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Nikson, who was the driver to the kidnapping gang, was arraigned before the Ogbia High Court on the two-count charge of conspiracy and kidnapping.
He was arraigned at the court with another suspect, David Ekegima. Ekegima was discharged and acquitted.
The Presiding Judge, Justice Raphael Ajunwa, while delivering the judgement on the matter, found Charles Nikson guilty of the two charges.
According to her: “On the charge of conspiracy, there is no specific term for the charge. And I hereby sentence you to 10 years imprisonment.”
There was heavy shoot out in November, 2020 between operatives of the Operation Puff Adder of the Bayelsa State Police Command and a Seven-man kidnapping gang along the Iminringi areas of Ogbia Local Government Council of the State, leading to the rescue of Vivian Okoye.
It was gathered that the abduction of the victims, occurred at about 7.30pm along the Imiringi residence of the businessman and carried out by armed men numbering Seven.
The kidnappers, according to the victims, arrived in a white Hilux vehicle with registration number GBB 30 FS and were dressed in Military and Police camouflarge, ‘ they drove away with their victims towards the Onuebum waterside in Ogbia area where a getaway boat were stationed.’
One of the victims relative said the kidnappers were asking for Blessed Obaino but they decided to kidnap the wife after they could not get him. The neighbour was driving into the house before he was abducted.’
“They gained entrance into the compound following the entrance of one of Obaino’s boys. They must have been waiting before he walked into the ambush.’
“Series of Save-our-Soul messages were sent out to the emergency lines of the State Commissioner of Police and the Operation Puff Adder led by DSP Chris Nwaogbo.The swift response by a gallant team of the security outfit led to the shootout along Iminringi road.’
“One policeman was injured by a bullet grazing his shoulder, while the kidnappers abandoned their vehicle and the victims. They ran into the Ogbia bush. The bullet-ridden Hilux of the kidnappers has been recovered,” he said.