5. Baddo of Ikorodu/ Godogodo
The number 5 position is jointly shared by two notorious criminals who for too long terrorized Lagos state, Baddo and Godogo.
Baddo was infamous for molesting children and women, with robbery as part of the crimes that made him dreaded within Ikorodu.
Godogodo allegedly went for operations with a bag containing 10 fully loaded AK 47 rifles with 30 rounds of ammunition each and as such, he was fully prepared in terms of weapons on his back.
It was gathered that Godogodo used to tell his gang members that he would never be arrested alive and had vowed to go down with as many policemen as possible on the day he is unable to escape arrest.
He was so good at disguising his criminal activities that even his wife and family members never knew what he was into.
He had six houses in different locations including Lagos, Ogun and Ondo States, and never stayed in a particular location for more than a month.
4. Derico Nwanmama
Okwudili Ndiwe also known as Derico Nwamama was dubbed the king of the underworld in the south-eastern region of Nigeria.
According to reports, Derico was a street urchin who grew in a dreaded gang leader, one whose name sent tremor to the hearts of many within the eastern region.
Traders and residents of Onitsha, the commercial capital of Anambra state were the ones who felt his scourge the most.
According to reports, Derico Nwamama had killed over 100 people including 25 police officers whose lives he mercilessly wasted.
He was a master of countless bus robberies and will not blink twice before pumping his hot lead bullets into the beating hearts of hapless victims.
There is a legend that after his successful raids, he would boast and declare himself invincible. Derico seemed to have placed a lot of faith and confidence in the charms prepared for him by the traditional witch doctors.
Prior to his being crowned king of thieves in Anambra, there was a Chiejina who was described as the deadliest armed robber in the whole state.
Derico’s father too was from Aguleri and in no time, the paths of the two met and they became very good friends and colleagues in the armed robbery business.
However, their friendship would not last for long as bloody arguments soon broke out between the two of them over the scope and nature of executing their operations.
Both of them were at the peak of their strengths and they were equally feared all over the region.
The brutality of Derico soon proved too toxic for Chiejina, and during a violent argument over their mode of operation and leadership, Derico blasted Chiejina to an early grave with a volley of bullets.
After the death of Chiejina, Derico became the undisputed emperor of terror in the land.
In May 2001, the Anambra state police command launched the Operation Derico which was aimed at capturing Derico and his gang members at all cost.
Some of Derico’s men were arrested in the police offensive, but Dericoa was still elusive as he kept operating with reckless abandon, robbing, killing and kidnapping innocent Nigerians.
3. Shina Rambo
Shina Rambo is one name that has refused to go away especially from the brains of those who witnessed the nightmare of this criminal.
With a name that reminds one of the movie “First Blood” starring Sylvester Stalone as John Rambo, Shina Rambo made a dreaded name for himself, launching attacks that made even the police force fear to battle him.
It is fabled that Shina Rambo will rob a full highway with his gang, shooting sporadically like a soldier at war.
There are stories that say he was killed in operation, however, some other accounts say he died like an ordinary man.
2. Dr Oyenusi
On the 8th of September, 1971, ‘Doctor’ Ishola Oyenusi, a notorious Nigerian robber was executed, his is name forever etched in the history of Nigeria as one of the most violent armed robbers, a criminal who unleashed boundless terror on many Nigerians.
By the early 1970s, just after the end of a bloody civil war, cold-hearted robber Ishola Oyenusi who called himself Dr Oyenusi, terrorized all of Lagos, Nigeria’s largest commercial centre.
Oyenusi was no ordinary bandit, he was wicked and had all the self-confidence in the world to go with it.
His arrogance was also legendary. In 1970, he was arrested and handcuffed by a police officer.
As the policeman was ordering him around, Oyenusi blasted him and thundered: “People like you don’t talk to me like that when I am armed. I gun them down.”
This robber was so feared that when the famed movie director, Chief Eddie Ugbomah made a film titled The Rise and Fall of Dr Oyenusi in 1977, there was no one bold enough to come forward to act the role of the armed robber because they feared his members would strike.
Ugbomah had no other option but to act the role himself with the feature film depicting the senseless violence of armed robberies and the absolutely atrocious manner by which lives of innocent Nigerians were snuffed out.
Afetr shooting the movie, Ugbomah received a letter from thieves who invaded and looted his provision store, carting away all they could.
In the letter, they promised to return his goods if he would only stop shooting the film in which he exposed the support received by the armed robbers from their ‘godfathers’ and even high-ranking officers in the Nigerian Armed Forces.
The stubborn Ugbomah called their bluff and went ahead with the 16mm-flick, he would later produce many other films such as Death of a Black President (1983), Esan (Nemesis), The Mask and Vengeance of the Cult in 1985.
Crowned emperor of robbers in the 1970s, Oyenusi was described as the ‘first celebrated armed robber in Nigeria’. He is regarded by some as the pioneer of conventional armed robbery in Nigeria.
Oyenusi was reportedly nabbed by the Nigerian police in March 1971, after he organized a robbery in which $28,000 (value as at that time) was stolen.
Although the first public execution of robbers had taken place in April 1971, that of Oyenusi and his criminal allies was a special case and the Lagos government reportedly took time to prepare the grounds at the Bar Beach.
A combined team of police officers and soldiers struggled to contain the surging crowd of thousands of excited spectators.
Unarguably Nigeria’s most dreaded criminal, Lawrence Nomanyagbon Anini was a Nigerian bandit who terrorised Benin city in the 1980s along with his sidekick Monday Osunbor.
Anini in the hospital after being injured and apprehended.
Anini was dreadfully called ‘The Law’ or ‘Ovbigbo’.
He migrated to Benin at an early age, learned to drive and became a skilled taxi driver.
Reports suggest that he became known in Benin motor parks as a man who could control the varied competing interests among motor park touts and operators.
Anini is widely recognized as a driver and transporter for gangs, criminal godfathers and thieves.
He created a gang which included, Monday Osunbor, Friday Ofege, Henry Ekponwan, Eweka and Alhaji zed zed or Zegezege who was never captured.
They started out as car hijackers, bus robbers and bank thieves. Gradually, he extended his criminal acts to other towns and cities far north and east of Benin.
It is echoed in some quarters that on one mission which eventually went south, Anini drove from Benin to Lagos with reverse.