Police Fail To Return Cars Recovered From Armed Robbers To Owner Despite Collecting Over N500,000 From Him For ‘Investigation’ | #NwokeukwuMascot
An Abuja resident, Isa Bawa, has narrated how operatives of the Nigeria Police Force are yet to release his stolen cars to him despite paying over N500,000 to aid the police investigation.
Bawa who related his account to SaharaReporters recalled how some armed robbers stormed his house in Abuja in October 2020 and took away two cars belonging to him and his wife.
Meanwhile, the police later arrested some of the armed robbers and recovered the cars, but instead of returning them to Bawa, one of the cars was gifted to a police officer who also repainted it and travelled to Zamfara State.
“The armed robbers went away with two newly bought and unregistered cars; black coloured Toyota Rav 4 2008 and white colored Mercedes-Benz C300 2010.
“After the robbery, I visited the Bwari Police Station the next morning to make an official report about the robbery. Some police men visited my house and that was all for a month.
“Exactly a month after, 20th November, 2020, I was called to come to the Bwari Police station to identify robbers that were arrested in Gwagwalada, Abuja to know if any looked like the ones that robbed I and my family. I was able to identify one, Abbas. It was easy because he (Abbas) was the person that repeatedly and uncontrollably hit me on the night of the robbery.
“The case was later transferred to SARS office Abuja and I had to be visiting the office almost every day. I was made to pay various huge amounts of money for tracking of the cars and other things like a visit to Oyo to arrest one of the robbers. This Oyo trip alone cost me N300,000. This is not inclusive of the N250,000 I paid other times and numerous N50,000 I pay almost every time in visit the SARS office.”
He added that despite a series of efforts to ensure his cars were recovered back from the thieves, there was no positive result until he engaged the service of a tracker who was not a police officer.
“After several attempts with no way forward, I contacted an unofficial tracker that tracked the Mercedes-Benz to SARS office car park. Before I could officially let SARS know about the result of the unofficial tracker, the Mercedes-Benz had been gifted to a police officer. We found out that the officer with the car had been transferred to Zamfara and he was called to turn the car in. He had changed the colour of the car as at the time we saw the car.
“Till today, we have not been given possession of the Mercedes-Benz,” he added.
He also alleged that a police officer, named David Ibrahim told him that one of his cars was among the cars recovered from the armed robbers the day they were arrested.
He continued: “We were told by the IPO, David, that on the day of the arrest of the criminals, three cars were recovered, a RAV4, a Mercedes-Benz and a Peugeot. It is unfortunate that till date, the police claim not to know of the whereabouts of the RAV4 while we're yet to take possession of the Mercedes-Benz.
“Please help me sir as I invested so much to get those cars with the aim of reselling. The loss of these cars not only affected my business but also my family. My kids have been living with the shock of what happened that night. If we can recover these cars, it will help boost their confidence in the system and in life generally,” he added.
When contacted by SaharaReporters, David Ibrahim via a phone conversation claimed that Bawa’s cars were auctioned legally after expiration of six months when nobody claimed its ownership by the police.
The police officer added that the car had been retrieved back and presently in the police custody.
“We have gotten the car back. It is only, the Mercedes-Benz C300 and we are waiting for a final approval to release it back to them,” the police officer added.
Bawa said, “On October 20, 2020, at about 01:15am, I, my wife and three kids were attacked by armed robbers numbering over 10 at our residence at Kogo 1, Bwari, Abuja.