The Nigerian Police Force has uncovered a factory illegally manufacturing AK-47 rifles in Jos South Local Government Area of Plateau State.
The Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, disclosed this while parading the two middle-aged men: Joe Michael and Iliya Bulus, alongside 79 other suspects in Abuja.
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He explained that when the operatives carried out the raid on the illegal factory, not less than 20 pieces of locally produced AK-47 rifles were recovered by the operatives who had been on the trail of the suspects for a long time.
According to Mba, the suspects were arrested for the alleged fabrication of weapons by the operatives of the two major Units of operational and investigative team of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) and Special Tactical Squad (STS) of the Force.
He told newsmen that they were arrested across the country for various offences ranging from kidnapping, banditry, armed robbery, culpable homicide, gun running to illegal production and distribution of fake number plates.
The police spokesman lamented that the development portends a great danger to the security of the nation if not immediately curbed.
He said it would require extra knowledge of an expert to differentiate between AK-47 made in Europe and the locally-made ones.
“If you look at these weapons locally fabricated by the suspects, there is no difference from others being imported into the country, unless you are trained, you will not be able to spot the difference, they use the same magazines.
“We will follow up to track down those behind this, we will continue to deepen our intelligence, and we continue to work with other sister security agencies to check the proliferation of illegal arms in the country,” he said.
One of the suspects, Joe Michael, who said he attended a Technical College in Jos, told journalists that he had so far fabricated about 180 Units in the last three years which he sold at N80, 000 per unit.
The suspect claimed that he acquired the skill from his late boss simply known as James.