Police arrest pastor for kidnapping self, collecting ransom from church members

Rivers Police Spokesperson
Grace Iringe-Koko

The police command in Plateau have arrested a pastor for allegedly kidnapping himself and collecting ransom from members of his congregation.

The spokesman for the police in Plateau, DSP Alfred Alabo, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday in Jos.

The police arrested the suspect in November 2022.

”The police have uncovered the nefarious act of one Pastor Albarka Sukuya of Jenta Apata, Jos, who on several occasions staged his kidnap with his cohorts and received ransom from sympathising members of his congregation,” said the police statement.

It added, “Sequel to his spurious kidnaps of November 14 and November 15, 2022, where N400,000 and N200,000, respectively, were paid by his sympathisers as a ransom for his release, the incidents triggered suspicion,” noting that through “credible intelligence, the clergyman was invited by the DPO Nasarawa Gwong Police Station, CSP Musa Hassan and investigation commenced immediately.”

The police further stated that in their investigation, “it was established that the suspect has been conspiring with his gang to stage his kidnap and fraudulently collect (a) ransom. He has confessed to committing the crime.”

Mr Alabo said the suspect had revealed the identity of three other gang members, adding that two were arrested while one is at large.

“The suspect further disclosed that on January 1, he set ablaze the vehicles and a bicycle parked at ECWA Bishara 3, Jenta Apata premises belonging to his colleagues,” stated the police.