Operatives of the Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT), under the office of Inspector General of Police, have arrested the ringleader of the herdsmen and three other kingpins, who carried out the attack on New Year day that claimed the lives of over 73 residents of Benue State.
It was learnt that the ringleader, identified as Alhaji Laggi, 40, was arrested at the Tunga Forrest in Nasarawa State.
The Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of Operations, DIG Joshak Habillah, who made this disclosure on behalf of the IGP on Tuesday said the mastermind was arrested after deploying the most advanced technology and trailing him for more than three weeks.
Aside Laggi, the police authorities said four other principal suspects were arrested between February 16 to 19 also in Tunga town, Nasarawa State, in possession of AK47 rifles and other prohibited arms.
The four suspects were arrested in connection to the killing of Sergeant Solomon Dung, other police officers and many innocent citizens in Benue State.
While Laggi was fingered as the mastermind, the other four were identified as Mallam Mumini Abdullahi, 34, Muhammed Adamu, 30 and Ibrahim Sule, 32.
During preliminary interrogations, the suspects confessed to the killings and mentioned their fleeing gang members who are in possession of the police rifles they took from the cops they murdered.
Speaking with newsmen, a senior police officer said: “In line with the directives of the Inspector General, Ibrahim Idris, on the arrest of all persons involved in the killings in Benue State and those in possession of AK-47 rifles and other prohibited arms, four principal suspects were arrested in Tunga town, Nasarawa State, between February 16 and 19 by IRT in connection with the killing of Sergeant Solomon Dung and other Police officers and many innocent citizens in Benue State.
“They are Alhaji Laggi, 40, mastermind and gang leader of the herdsmen group; Mallam Mumini Abdullahi, 34; Muhammed Adamu, 30, and Ibrahim Sule, 32.
“They have confessed to the killings and mentioned other gang members in possession of the Police rifles they took from the slain officers as well as others in possession of arms.
“Security agents have commenced follow-up operations in Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa states.
“The DIG Operations, who is heading the operations, has spoken more on behalf of the Inspector General of Police on the investigation.”