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Over 1,100 Sim Cards, Cars Recovered From Kidnap Syndicate In FCT – CP Igweh

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Command has said it successfully tracked a criminal syndicate specialised in the sales of already registered sim cards to criminals.across the nation’s capital.

The syndicate were arrested on May 29, after weeks of intelligence trailing, led by the State Intelligence Department (SID) led by ACP Mohammed S. Baba.

The FCT Police Commissioner, Ben Igweh while parading the suspects: Ndubuisi Okeh, John Jock, Nafiu Tijani (a dispatcher), Nasiru Sulaiman, John Njoku and Suleiman Musa, said the syndicate operate with other people’s identities to avoid being traced or tracked.

He said, “They bridged national security and were involved in terrorism. In one of our fights in the kidnapper’s camp, we discovered that there were a lot of broken SIM cards, about 20-30 SIM cards broken.

“So, we ventured into the case and started enquiring: Why do we have a lot of SIM cards broken, as small as it is, they are still broken.

“We started by enquiring about the last of the bandits we arrested. We discovered that they may come from tribe A, but the SIM cards they used were from tribe B, so we decided to probe into it.

“We discovered that there are people specialised in producing active and workable SIM cards unknown to our security.

“They specialise in selling, and producing already registered SIM cards and we caught them all in Kaduna State.

“We recovered the machines and what they use to produce the SIM cards.

“Our worry is how they bypass the NIN and fingerprint that are required to produce cards. We recovered 1,100 already active SIM cards.

“They sell it to bandits and criminal lords at the cost of N3000-N5000 each. So, it is a case we are probing more.

“It may interest you to know that four different numbers could be registered under a single NIN, hence, these criminals employ street sim card vendors to get the details of unsuspecting residents who buy sim cards and register at the same time.

“If you remove any of the SIM cards and put it in your phone, the network they use will ask you to put credit, and once you do so, the phone becomes active.

“Three registration machines and other gadgets were recovered from the suspects. The suspects have all confessed to the crime and will be charged to court at the conclusion of the investigation.”

Speaking to journalists, the suspects confessed to the crime, stating that they used the biometrics of a few to register many.

Although they denied conniving with any of the network providers, the syndicate admitted to using the biometric verification scanners to register unsuspecting members of the public randomly in Kaduna and Abuja communities.

The syndicate are part of the 14 suspects paraded at the FCT police command on Thursday.

Other cases involving car thefts and their perpetrators were also addressed by the command, with no fewer than seven firearms, six vehicles, three two fingerprint machines and one Gionee phone recovered by the operatives.

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