Details have emerged on how the suspected militants of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) who attacked the Orlu divisional police headquarters in Imo State snatched vehicles before the operation.
Daily Trust had reported how at least eight of them were gunned down during an exchange of crossfire with security operatives.
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Our correspondent gathered that that the gunmen stormed Orie Akokwa in Ideato Local Government Area of the State snatched some vehicles, including a Range Rover SUV, a Toyota mini bus and Hilux van.
After snatching the vehicles, the hoodlums headed to Orlu to attack the police station but they met fortified security agents.
All the stolen cars were recovered from the armed gang.
Though the identifies of the men are yet to be determined, police have linked similar attacks in the state to members of the Eastern Security Network, the armed wing of the outlawed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB).
Commenting on the incident, Police Commissioner in the State, Abutu Yaro, said while nine of the gunmen were killed, others escaped with gunshot injuries.
He also confirmed that some security operatives sustained injuries in the incident.
Yaro said that they are reasonably believed to be part of the hoodlums that attacked the Police Headquarters and the Correctional Service on the 5th of April 2021.
In a statement, Yaro said the success of the operation was part of the strategy adopted by the security agencies, working in synergy to rid the state of those described as unknown gunmen.
The statement said, “On the 6/5/2021 a group of Bandits attempted to attack the Divisional Police and Area command Headquarters both in Orlu LGA , but were successfully repelled. However, the operatives IGP Response Team (IRT) in conjunction with the special forces and other tactical Teams of the Command, engaged them in a shootout and in a bid to retreat and escape they met the reinforcement teams from the Military and DSS, they were then engaged from on both fronts.
“After the gun duel, nine of the insurgents lost their lives while others fled with bullets wounds abandoning their operational vehicles in the process.
“However, four of our operatives sustained various degree injuries and are presently responding to treatment.
“The hoodlums were seen in a viral video around Orlu Metropolis stealing and forcefully collecting items from people, and also causing public disorder and brandishing assorted types of rifles with brazen bravado.”
He listed items recovered from them to include four AK 47 Rifles, One Pump Action, two Toyota Siena, one Toyota Camry Car and one Toyota Hilux Van.
Others include one SUV Highlander, Olone SUV Land Rover, one (1) Nissan Pick up Van and assorted charms.