Five children were rescued from a suspected human trafficker and kidnapper in Shendam, Plateau State, by troops from Operation Whirl Stroke (OPWS).

Samuel Ottuh, 17, was taken into custody by OPWS forces; he is originally from Akwa-Ibom State.

While parading the alleged kidnapper in front of press at the Tactical Air Command NAF Base in Makurdi, Benue State, OPSW Commander Maj. Gen. Sunday Igbinomwanhia made the announcement.

According to Igbinomwanhia, his squad was able to apprehend the suspect right before he was planning to flee with the stolen children since they had reliable information.

He claimed that the trafficking cartel’s leader had vanished when he saw the troops coming and that only Samuel was captured.

Igbinomwanhia said the five minors who were two boys and three girls, spanning between the ages of 2-5 years could not speak the names of their towns or remember the names of their parents.

He said the suspect, however, confessed to committing the act but stated he was working for an Abuja-based woman whom he gave her name as Mrs Tina Nkechi.

After the children’s good fortune ran out in a park in Nasarawa State, the suspect admitted that they had been abducted from Shendam in Plateau State and were being transported to Abuja to deliver to Mrs. Tina Nkechi.

The Commander OPWS also revealed that Samuel explained how the kidnappers had lived in the area for some time as tenants, befriending locals and the children’s’ parents to stay under the radar before committing their crime.

He let it slip that the five youngsters were turned over to NAPTIP.

The head of operations for NAPTIP, Felix Akperaga, made a statement on behalf of the State coordinator, saying that an investigation will be conducted to catch the major culprits and identify the parents of the recovered children.

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