Suspected kidnapper, Victor Dominic Ovo, turned church premises into a kidnappers’ den to divert attention in Agbarho community in Ughelli North area of Delta State.
Ovo, who owns an exotic building in the community was generous enough to donate a part of the building to a pastor, who has been using the space as a fellowship centre.
But what the pastor and other members of the community did not know was that the well-built bungalow believed to be the residential apartment of this ‘successful businessman’ was nothing but a hideout where several kidnap victims were kept.
According to The SUN, Dominic is a leading member of a notorious kidnap gang whose members have been smartly picking high profile persons in the state. He and three others identified as Owesi Okpaka, Lawrence Kevwe Egagah, Alex Okoun and Usobotie Sylvester were arrested when of one their victims summoned courage and petitioned the Inspector General of Police.
The victim, identified as Daniel, a staff of Zenith Bank, Urhobo College Branch, Warri said that he was kidnapped on October 5, 2020 about 8am by heavily armed men who took him to a house at Agbarho community.
Recounting his ordeal, Daniel said that he was on his way to work when he was trailed and abducted by heavily armed men.
He said: “On October 5, 2020 about 8am, I was abducted by a gang of kidnappers. There were four of them in a Mercedes Benz Car; I’m not too sure of the colour of the vehicle. Another car that I had also seen opposite my street followed and blocked me from the rear. I was taken into the Mercedes Benz and we went to a location suspected to be Agbarho community, owing to the duration and number of turns we made before I was dropped. I was kept in a bungalow and made to stay in the passage of the building. The building had four rooms, two toilets, a kitchen and I could hear women fetching water in a well. I was blindfolded, chained in both hands and legs. During the negotiation, they would take me and drive around while I was allowed to talk to my family. I was there for five days and my family paid N15 million before I was released on October 10 2020.”
Narrating why he used church building as hideout for kidnap victims, Dominic, a native of Oghara in Sapelle Local Government Area of Delta State said it was to divert attention
He claimed that he was the one who handled the negotiation of ransom.
“I dropped out of university and went into wood business and illegal oil bunkering. I also have a poultry farm by the side so that if anyone queries my source of income, I will show them my farm.
“Once you are into anything illegal, you will naturally meet bad friends. This was how I met the others and we formed a five-man gang. I own exotic cars, which we normally used for our kidnap operations.
“The Zenith Bank staff kidnap was arranged by Okpaka who was a staff of the bank. The first person paid us N15million in dollars as ordered by us. The second and third victim also paid the same sum. Okpaka chose the rich ones among them and just as he predicted, they paid good money and my total share from the three victims was about 5million.”
Dominic said his house was used to camp the victims because of the location. “I am seen as a big boy in my area and my house is massive. I gave out the front part to a pastor who knows nothing about my illegal business. People respect me because of that, this is why it is very easy to keep victims there even while people come to the compound to fellowship.
“There was a time the police tracked a number to my area. They did not enter my compound because people were there praising God. This is the reason why whenever we are calling for negotiation with victim’s number, we will move the person to another location before he or she will be allowed to talk to their family.
Apart from kidnapping, I have participated in high profile organised robberies in Ondo state. I did that only three times in 2020.”