By: Eugene Agha

Police detectives attached to the Federal Anti-robbery Squad have arrested three persons for allegedly diverting a truck load of split air conditioners valued at about N25 million.

The suspects are said to be members of a suspected four-man robbery gang which specialises in hijacking cargo trucks within Lagos and Ogun states.

One of the suspects, who identified himself as Pastor Peter Iyasele, was allegedly arrested at Igando area of the metropolis by a team of police detectives, who had mounted surveillance for him. Others are, Anthony Ibiade, and Amas Debar.

In his confessional statement to the police, the self-acclaimed pastor wrote: “My name is Peter Iyesele, 56-year-old, I am married and I have four children. I am a pastor and I have a church along Badagry expressway.

“I was arrested at Igando bus-stop for participating in hijacking and diversion of goods worth over N25 million. I have been engaging in these operations for years but after a while I stopped and invested proceeds from the operations in transportation.”

The suspect further alleged that he opted out of the gang nine years ago when he gave his life to Christ.

“I had made enough from series of operations in the past and I was doing well in my transportation business before I was duped by a woman,” he said.

The self-acclaimed pastor further said that he went back to the crime to raise enough money to expand his church, adding that had he succeeded, he would have used the proceeds to build a house for God.

A police source told Daily Trust that the suspects were arrested following a tip off from a public spirited person, alleging that the trio had hijacked a truck carrying about 25 units of heavy duty outdoor split air conditioners worth over N25 million.

The source stated that based on the tip off, the Commissioner of Police in charge of Federal SARS, Chris Ezike, mandated a team to investigate the authenticity of the information.

Ezike, who confirmed the arrest to Daily Trust revealed that it was the arrest of one Amas Debar that led to the arrest of Anthony Ibiade and Peter Iyesele.

He explained that the suspects had successfully hijacked the goods and transported it to their warehouse in Ibadan.

He said it was the arrest of the three suspects that led to the recovery of 22 units of air conditioners, adding that about two of the air-conditioners were, however, not recovered.

Ezike further revealed that Peter worked as a transporter, while the other gang members were professional hijackers whose stock in trade was diversion of goods.

Though, one of the suspects identified simply as Oliver is presently on the run, those arrested had been charged to court.