The Nigerian police have arrested three dismissed officers in Enugu State for allegedly hijacking a truck carrying 40,000 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol.

The Force spokesperson, Muyiwa Adejobi, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday.

Mr Adejobi, an assistant commissioner of police, said the dismissed officers allegedly hijacked the truck on 29 May along the Ohodo-Opi Road in Igbo-Etiti Local Government Area of Enugu State.

A video clip that had gone viral recently surfaced online and showed five crime suspects being interrogated by unidentified police operatives.

Two of the suspects — John Okoro and Onyeka — were heard in the clip claiming to be commercial bus drivers contracted to drive other suspects to where a crude oil truck was parked.

Mr Okoro claimed he is from Ugbene-Ajima, a community in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State.

The other suspects, James Mamah and Otache Egbe, claimed to be police operatives attached to Obosi Divisional Police Headquarters, Anambra State.

Mr Mamah, a police sergeant, hails from Amufie Community in Igbo-Eze North Local Government Area of Enugu State, while Mr Egbe, who claimed to be an inspector, hails from Benue State.

The suspects also claimed that they and others escorted the truck from an unnamed location to the Igbo-Etiti Local Government Area of the state.

Mr Mamah claimed that he and his colleagues collected the two AK-47 rifles, a Beretta pistol and four magazines recovered from them.

The suspect claimed they collected the arms and ammunition from the Obosi Divisional Police Headquarters.

He claimed he was not aware of army uniforms recovered from them. One of the suspects did not identify himself in the clip.

Some of the suspects claimed an accomplice, Kingsley Eze, had fled.

An unidentified police officer was heard saying the suspects were arrested by a combined team of police operatives and a vigilante service, Neighbourhood Watch Group members in the area.

But in the Sunday statement, Mr Adejobi said contrary to their claims, some of the arrested suspects are dismissed police operatives.

The spokesperson said the suspects allegedly stole the petrol truck and abducted the truck driver and the truck assistant.

“These individuals were apprehended after a meticulous operation which led to the rescue of the abducted driver and the motor boy,” he said.

‘Motor boy’ is Nigerian slang for a truck assistant.

Mr Adejobi identified the dismissed officers arrested during the operation as Solomon Abah, Messrs Egbe and Mamah.

“The investigation led to the recovery of significant exhibits, including two AK-47 rifles, 105 rounds of ammunition, and various security uniforms.

“The apprehended suspects have confessed to their crimes and are under investigation by the Enugu State Criminal Investigation Department, with ongoing efforts to recover the stolen PMS,” Mr Adejobi stated.

“The suspects will soon appear in court for prosecution.”

He said the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Kayode Egbetokun, has reiterated the commitment of the Nigeria Police Force to collaborate with all Nigerians in crime-fighting.

Mr Egbetokun also warned individuals engaging in criminal activities to stop immediately or face prosecution.

The IGP urged Nigerians to support the police in their efforts to maintain safety and security across the country.

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