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50 Arrested Over Cult Killings in Rivers

P,M. News, Nigeria
Apr. 22, 2004
Cyril Akpan • Friday April 23, 2004

The Rivers State Police Command has arrested 50 suspected cultists over recent killings in the state.

Most of the killings took place along IIlabuchi/Timber streets in Diobu axis last Sunday. Four persons, including a six-year-old boy were shot dead by a suspected cult gang in the area.

Campus Cults
Nigeria’s so-called “Campus Cults” are criminal gangs usually operating in and around the country’s colleges.

A police source told PMNews that the suspects were arrested at Abuja Estate along Creek Road and Illabuchi/Timber streets in Diobu, Port Harcourt.

According to him, sophisticated weapons, including AK 47 rifles were used during the attacks which lasted for about ten minutes.

PMNews gathered that on Sunday, 18 April, 2004, a gang of four armed men hijacked a white Volkswagen bus with registration number Rivers XA 257 PBT, from a driver at Lagos Bus Stop in the Port Harcourt municipality and ordered him to take them to Abuja Estate along Creek Road.

It was learnt that nine other heavily-built men joined them at Creek Road with a bag containing sophiscated arms and ammunition.

Our source disclosed further that on getting to the estate, they attacked three naval men on guard, took their rifles and commanded them to lie flat on the floor. The men, it was gathered further, started shooting indiscriminately at the base of a rival cult group, which on learning of their approach had fled the area.

It was during the shootings that four persons, including a six year-old boy, returning from a church service were killed while six others were seriously injured.

Some residents of the area who witnessed the shootings were said to have reported the incident to the police who raced to the scene and arrested some of the cultists while the others escaped.

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