BREAKING: From Cultism To Armed Robbery: How I Tainted My Family, Made My Mum Sad —Armed Robbery Suspect - 247Updates
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BREAKING: From cultism to armed robbery: How I tainted my family, made my mum sad —Armed robbery suspect

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ONE of the four suspects arrested by the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Unit of Ondo State Police Command for armed robbery, Ogunleye Timileyin, has revealed how he became an armed robber through mingling with cult group members.…CONTINUE READING

The Police Public Relations Officer in the command, SP Odunlami Bukola, who spoke with Saturday Tribune, said that the suspects were arrested by SWAT after its operatives received information on possession of gun. On getting the suspect, they discovered that it was Timileyin who was once apprehended by them for car snatching and charged to court.

When interrogated, Timileyin coughed out the name of his gang member, Samson Sunday a.k.a Small. He also mentioned the buyer of the snatched motorcycles, Bashiru Ibrahim, who was promptly nabbed with Abdulrahman Usman who bought one of the bikes from him.

In an interview, Timileyin spoke on how he joined some of his Aiye cult group members to snatch cars, which eventually resulted in his arrest, arraignment and remand in prison where he met an inmate, Sunday. When the two eventually regained freedom, according to Timileyin, they decided to go on motorcycle snatching, with Sunday purchasing a gun to make their operations more successful, so they believed.

With that decision, Sunday reportedly got a gun and the two suspects started operation in Ore, snatching two motorcycles. They were said to have taken the bikes to Akure to sell to one Bashiru. Sunday returned to Ore but kept his gun with Timileyin, who, in turn, put it in Bashiru’s custody. Bashiru also sold the snatched motorcycles to two people.

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From cultism to armed robbery: How I tainted my family
After some time, Saturday Tribune gathered, Bashiru called Timileyin that he needed a mobile phone and asked him to and snatch it with the gun kept with him. Timileyin thereafter went to Federal University of Technology, Akure, on a bike (FUTA) and fired a shot to rob a victim of his phone, but as he wanted to escape, another motorcycle rider threw his helmet at him, causing the gun he was holding to fall from his hand. Timileyin abandoned the gun and quickly ran after the okada rider who brought him for the operation as that one also wanted to run away when he saw how things were turning.
Meanwhile, Sunday had been asking about the gun he kept with Timileyin and Bashiru, with the thought that they would have been using it for operations without giving him a share of the proceeds. So, after the phone-snatching operation, Timileyin informed Sunday of the loss but he did not believe him. He reportedly went to report Timileyin to some area boys and the matter eventually got to SWAT operatives when a fight over a gun was reported to them.

The SWAT started investigation and later got information on how the robbery incident occurred in December and the gun was kept with Amotekun Corps when abandoned. Through intelligence gathering, the SWAT succeeded in arresting Timileyin, Isaac, Bashiru the receiver and one of the buyers he sold the snatched motorcycles to.

Timileyin, who was shedding tears as he narrated his journey into crime, said: “I am 28 years old, from Akure. I’m a makeup artist. I joined a cult group, Neo Black Movement called Aiye Confraternity, after my secondary school education through initiation by friends. It was in the cult group that I saw a gun, a pump action rifle, and it was given to me. I was asked that if I would kill an enemy if I see one, and I replied in the affirmative. I pulled the trigger and fired a shot. As I was not used to it, the gun dropped from my hand and I fell down.

“Those I associated with in the cult group were not clean in their ways. I mingled with them and since then, my life started bending. We were in a caucus called Squad. They used to snatch vehicles. They were the ones who led me into what I am today. Most of them are in the condemned cells in the prison. Some of them were also Yahoo guys.

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“I started following them to snatch cars. We used to snatch cars anywhere in Akure but we used to sell them to those far from us. My gang members and I were arrested after a car-snatching operation and we landed in the prison after we were charged to court. The others are still in the prison now. My freedom was just grace and mercy that I received through bail when I became very sick in the prison. I almost died.

“After getting back to the town, I didn’t want to put burden on my parents because of my shameful acts. They have me and my younger sister as their children. I started working as a bus conductor in Ore. As a conductor, I was smoking marijuana. That was how I saw Sunday whom we call Small. We met in the prison but I came out before him. He asked me to do ’normal’ for him, but I told him I had nothing and was only working as a conductor. He asked me if I was ‘hustling’ (robbery), and I replied that if I was, I would not be doing the job I was into. He asked me what we could do that would bring money and I told him I didn’t have any connection with anyone. He told me that he spent a long time in the prison and had no choice than to use a gun to survive now.

“I made him to know that we could use brain to survive. We exchanged our phone numbers and he still insisted on getting a gun. He told me that he and other gang member had snatched two motorcycles before. He said that his friend, Austin, who eventually sold gun to him took one of the bikes to Aye in Okitipupa to sell but gave him stipend.

“That was when I told him that I know one Bashiru who used to supply Tramadol to some people. I got to know him because I was also buying the banned drug from him. One day, Bashiru told me that the bike he was using was not good again and he needed another. So, I recommended him to Sunday for the purchase of the bikes we would snatch. He said I should call Bashiru to confirm that he would not disappoint and I did. Since Bashiru is an Hausa man and Sunday speaks the language, they conversed and he was convinced that the intended receiver would not disappoint him.

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“Sunday connected with his friend, Austin, but he didn’t come with the ‘level’ (gun) for more than two weeks. After some time, Sunday called me that he already had the gun. We took Austin to the location where we wanted to carry out the operation and he hid there. Sunday and I returned to town, picked two bikes separately and went to the designated spot. As we got there, Austin came out with the gun and the riders ran away in fear. We took the bike to Akure and called Bashiru. He paid for them and was given the gun we used for keeps by Sunday. Bashiru called me weeks later and told me he needed a phone. He told me to use the gun with him and I agreed.

“I went with a bike rider whom Bashiru got for me and succeeded in snatching the phone. However, another bike rider who saw me threw his helmet at my hand which caused a shot to be fired from the gun, making it to fall. We sped off.

“When we got to Bashiru, he saw that the screen of the phone had broken and said that he didn’t want such. I was angry, telling him that we lost a gun and escaped by the whiskers. I threw the phone at him and stormed away. He later gave me N8,000.

“Sunday later came and asked for his gun. When he was told that it had been lost, he didn’t believe. He thought I had taken it, so he went to area brothers to help collect it from me. They called me, and when I told them about its loss, they didn’t believe. They took me to the palace; I said the same thing. That was when SWAT operatives came to arrest me. They apprehended Sunday and others.”

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Sobbing, Timileyin said: “I’m making these confessions because I have vowed that anytime I go into such criminal activities again, I should not enjoy the grace of life I have now. I have destroyed and tainted my family. My mother has been affected so much that her life is almost gone. Those who liked me have turned against me. I’m so sad that I caused all these for myself.”

Sunday, also 28 years old, said in the interview: “I’m from Kwale in Delta State but was born in Ondo State. I learnt the work of a Rewire but was selling hard drugs which landed me in prison in 2017. I regained freedom in September 2023.

“I went to my master in Ore and told him to help me as I had nothing to engage in. He gave me money and asked me to start selling ice cream. I did, but when I saw that the business was slow in yielding money, I returned to selling hard drugs such as Colorado (also called Colos) and Ice. That was when Timileyin came to me. I had known him on the streets before but we were not close. However, when we met in the prison, we became friendly.

“When he came to see me, he told me he had nothing on him so, I gave him N1,500 and he went away. After his return to me at another time, he told me that he had someone who would buy snatched motorcycles. He asked how we could get a gun and I told him I had a friend, Austin, who would get one for us and I called him. That friend got the gun for me. I paid N50,000 and he brought it to me on December 2, 2023. He also got two cartridges for me.

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“On December 8, Timileyin, Austin and I went for robbery operation at Ofosun, along Ore-Benin expressway. My friend hid in the bush while Timileyin and I went back to town and flagged down two motorcycles for a ride. When we got to the area where Austin was, we told them we wanted to get down.

Then, Austin came out with the gun and the riders, in fear, abandoned their motorcycles and ran for their lives.

“Austin and Timileyin mounted the bikes and we faced Akure where we sold them to Bashiru. He paid N200,000 for one and N110,000 for the other. Three of us shared the money. I wanted to go and sleep in a hotel and didn’t want to take the gun with me. That was why I gave the gun to Timileyin who handed it over to Bashiru. I didn’t go with them on the operation where they lost the gun.

“I was selling drugs but I don’t take any. I was smoking cigarettes but I stopped it long ago. I made a mistake purchasing that gun and I would never do such a thing again.”

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The buyer of the snatched motorcycles, Bashiru, aged 28 and from Sokoto State, told Saturday Tribune that he came to the South West about six years ago. “It is true that I was helping someone to supply Tramadol to his customers with my bike. It is also true that I bought two motorcycles from Sunday and Timileyin for N310,000. I knew that they were snatched. I also knew that Timileyin is an armed robber; that was why I asked him to get a phone for me. I know it’s not good to commit crime. It was a mistake on my part. As an okada rider, I used to make N7,000, N8,000, even N9,000 daily,” Bashiru stated.

The fourth suspect, Abdulrahman, said that he was deceived by Bashiru to purchase the snatched motorcycle, as he claimed it was being sold by his friend while he presented the documents of it to him.

“I saw Bashiru with a motorcycle on which he wrote ‘For Sale.’ He told me that a friend of his, Abass, wanted to sell it. He showed me the documents and I expressed my desire to buy it. He sold it to me N320,000. I didn’t know it was snatched. I saw Bashiru as my brother and friend,” Abdulrahman explained.

The PPRO, SP Funmilayo Odunlami-Omisanya said that investigation into the suspects’ criminal activities was still ongoing in efforts to nab other members of the gang.

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