How We Robbed ATM Machine Users In Abuja, Enugu, Port Harcourt -Graduate, Youth Corp Member


In a case of conspiracy and robbery, the operatives of the Inspector General of Police IGP Abubakar Adamu’s Intelligence Response Team (IRT), led by Abba Kyari, a Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) has smashed a robbery syndicate and arrested a graduate and a youth corp member over series of robberies involving Automated Teller Machine ( ATM).

The suspects, David Wuese, a corp member and Godwin Akura, a masters degree holder, who belonged to a gang of five robbers, were arrested recently in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory and Enugu State, while three others are still at large.
Investigation revealed that the gang specialised in taking advantage of people who do not know how to use ATM machines or who were finding it difficult to use at bank premises.
It was gathered that they usually go to remote areas for their targets.
Police disclosed that they have inactive or stolen bank ATM cards of virtually all the banks in dozens with which they carry out operations.
It was revealed that the suspects would offer themselves to prospective users in any ATM galleries, well dressed, and pretending to have come to carry out banking transactions, while watching out for customers having difficulties in operating the machines as their prey.
“As they offer themselves, they will collect PINs of victims and thereafter, pretended as if the machine was not dispensing money. In the process, they will swiftly exchange their inactive or fake ATM cards with that of their victims, and vanish immediately with the victim’s card, which they later use to transfer funds or make withdrawals,” police disclosed.
It was also revealed that they equally used the robbed cards at big shops and super market where POS is operational to purchase goods.
Investigations further revealed that this was not the first time members of the syndicate were being arrested as some of them were arrested in 2016, 2017 and 2018 and charged to court by the IRT.
“They were charged to court, remanded at Kuje Prisons, their families paid a lot of money to secure their freedom. As soon as they were out, they went back to the same robbery pattern. Because of their activities, David was now re-arrested at Enugu State in 2017. Because he destroyed the syndicate, he was released. In 2018, David was re-arrested and detained in a police station in Abuja and later released,” it was disclosed.
“This year (2019), the IRT went after the gang which David is the leader. 166 assorted cards belonging to customers in various banks, almost all the banks. They were arrested at Makurdi, Benue State. On interrogation, they confessed that David, the gang leader, has been arrested, adding that it was the reason they relocated to Makurdi.”
The IRT team was said to had proceeded to Enugu, where he (David)was arrested with 19 ATM cards of various banks.
He had robbed a lady’s card in the morning, used it to withdraw some money, came back to the same bank in the evening to make another withdrawal. The lady was said to have sighted him and raised an alarm, leading to his arrest.

Confessions
“My name is David Wuese, Christian, Catholic, I was re-arrested and detained at Trans Ekuru Police Division, Enugu. I am 31 years old. I am from Tsar in Vandeikya Local Government Area of Benue State. I am single. My father and my mother are both late. My mother died on May 27, 2019. My dad died on March 31, 2004. We are five in the family. I am the second born,” Wuese made a brief introduction of himself in an interview with Saturday INDEPENDENT.
“I am a graduate. I have a Bachelors degree in Animal Science from the University of Agriculture, Makurdi between 2009-2014, but I spent two years extra and graduated in 2017 due to an accident I had, coupled with strikes.
“I am currently serving as a Youth Corp member in Abuja. I was arrested on October 29 in Enugu. I went with my friends to Enugu to rob people of their ATM cards around Trans Ekuru at a Zenith bank premises. We were three in number. The other two are at large. It was a lady who said she suspected me. I swerved the lady’s ATM card. As I was about crossing the road to escape, her husband who was in the car waiting for her asked her to check the ATM card with her and she discovered it was not hers. He came after me, raised an alarm and I was arrested and taken to a police station where the IRT came to pick me,” Wuese further confessed.
According to him: “This business started in 2017. It was Bamidele Alex Omotayo who introduced me and Godwin Akura into the deal. Later, he (Bamidele) brought in one Chika Okenyi into the deal around 2015. In 2014, I was arrested in Calabar when I went to my mummy’s area because she (my mother) is from Calabar. I was charged to court and granted bail. I had collected about N380,000:00 from accounts of three complainants. So I refunded the money because I had money in my account. The matter lasted for about 6-7 Months in court and was later struck-out.
“On November 18, 2016, I was arrested in Abuja. We were four that were arrested in the Area 10 Garki. There were three complainants. The IRT effected the arrest. We were charged to court, myself Omotayo Bamidele, Godwin Akura and Chika Okenyi. I knew Chika through Bamidele. Chika and Bamidele were in Benue State University together. We were granted bail with an option of fine. I cannot remember how much we paid.
“Later in April 2017, Chika Okenyi’s cousin was having a traditional wedding in Enugu State on a Tuesday and the white wedding was on Saturday. We came in into the State four days to the wedding. On the wedding day, around 5 a.m., the police came to the hotel where we lodged and took us away. I was with my ATM UBA card. I had money in my account. I quickly threw the card into a nearby gutter. I was the only one arrested. Chika went to his family house when the police arrived. I was taken to Abuja from there. Few days later, Chika’s father brought him to Abuja where he was also detained. We were granted bail.
“In January 2018, I went to use an ATM facility with a UBA card in Kubwa, Abuja. I met a lady using the machine. She said the network was very bad. She also said she had N15,000 and needed some money. So, out of pity, I gave her N3,000. After this, she was still standing there. I was wondering why she was still standing there. She later called her sister to come. She told her sister that she was surprised that she was having difficulty and somebody gave her money. The sister came with a guy, who started harassing me, took my phone, searched my wallet and I was handed over to the police. Four days, I was charged to court on suspicion of fraud.
On the advice of my lawyer, I pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three months imprisonment with an option of N45,000 fine. My step-sister paid the fine and I was allowed to go. Most of these arrests were not on the account that I committed the crime. It was because they have known that I was into such crime before.
“After this, I went to Benue. Bamidele and Chika had collected someone’s ATM card and withdrawn about N600,000:00 with it. While the police were looking for Chika and Bamidele, I was with Chika. Bamidele was not in town. I was arrested alongside Chika and Godwin. At the station in Makurdi headquarters, after interrogation, the police discovered I was not involved, but the complainant insisted he must get his money before they let me go. Chika brought the money and paid because Chika’s father who is a chief that stays in Gboko and Enugu came and we were released. This was the last. I can’t remember how much I have made from this ATM cards deal but it is in millions. We don’t do it so often. At times, two to three months. If we have money, we relax for some time.”
David also pleaded for forgiveness, adding that if he was arrested again, he should not be pardoned. “I bought the Toyota Camry 2016 with for N2,850,000:00. Part of the money used in purchasing the car was from the ATM robbery, and part of it was from Bet Nigeria lottery.
Confessing his involvement in the alleged crime, Godwin Akura, 30, from Gwer, East Local Government Area of Benue State and specifically from Aliade town, in Benue, said: “I am single. I work with Society for Family Health. I earn about N500,000 in a month. My earning is based on my performance. I am in the ICT section. I have a BSC in Education Technology, from Benue State University between 2010-2015. I started work with the organisation in 2015 and I am still working there presently. My dad is late and my mother is in Benue. We are only two in the family and I am the first.
“Police arrested me because they were trailing David. I was in Benue with his Camry car. I was arrested with his car on October 27, 2019. This is not the first time I am being arrested. I was arrested in 2016. Four of us were arrested by IRT. We were swerving ATM cards from our victims and swindling them of their monies. It was Bamidele Alex Omotayo that introduced me. Since then, I have done it a couple of times. I have made over N3 million from the business. This does not come all the time. It was peer influence that made me do it. I have only done it twice since I started working. We feel very bad and ashamed,” Godwin lamented.
According to him, it was one Torrence Ikyerve aka Rex was driving David’s car when they were arrested, adding that when the car was searched by the police, 169 ATM cards were recovered. He averred that the cards belonged to Terrence.

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