Police kill ESN operatives in Ebonyi

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The Ebonyi State Police Command says its Tactical Team has neutralised two members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Eastern Security Network (ESN).

The command said they were killed during a shootout while three were arrested.

The Command also said it recovered 13 military hand grenades suspected to have been fabricated in Russia, among other items.

Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Chris Anyanwu, said that men of the Tactical Team swooped on the camp of the hoodlums in Umuleje Amaeze, Nkalaha in Ishielu local government area of the State.

SP Anyanwu said that one of the suspects arrested during the last raid on the IPOB/ESN camp also in the State, who was assisting the Police in the investigation, led the team to the hideout of the hoodlums in a very thick forest, revealing that there were a lot of IPOB/ESN camps within and around the State.

The Police Command spokesperson stated that when the detectives were moving into the camp, the hoodlums were sighted but unknown to the criminals that the team had strategically planned on how to swoop on them.

He added that the hoodlums saw the first set of the operatives and opened fire on them and while they were doing that, the Tactical Team cordoned off the area and with superior firepower the criminals were subdued.

He pointed out that two of the arrested hoodlums had fatal bullet injuries, two were neutralized on the spot, while others ran into different directions.

He noted that the day the men of the Command invaded the hideout of the hoodlums was the market day of the community, adding that some of the hoodlums who ran into different directions went into the market and were shooting sporadically and looting the goods of the traders in the community.

SP Anyanwu maintained that the youths of the village in collaboration with the Vigilante apprehended one of the hoodlums, whom they were calling Unknown Gunmen and handed him over to the Police.

He said that the men of the team destroyed the camps of the hoodlums and recovered items they used in unleashing mayhem on the people of the area.

He said that items recovered from the camp included 13 Military hand grenades suspected to have been fabricated in Russia. Others included 210 electrical detonators, two Lexus 300 Jeeps, five motorcycles, two pump action guns, many single barrel guns, many ammunition of AK47 and GPNG, and about 30 pieces of military uniform.

SP Anyanwu said that other items included IPOB uniforms, the Biafran flag, and six bags of Indian hemp, among others.

The Police Public Relations Officer said that the hoodlums also engaged in the sale of arms stolen from Police formations during attacks, adding that youths of warring communities also take arms acquired illegally to the hoodlums, which they use to carry out their nefarious activities.