The principal suspect in the kidnap of a teenager, who was taken to Libya for prostitution last year, Kelvin Okorie, said yesterday that he gave his cousin out after taking N10,000 from the suspected traffickers.
The victim, 15-year-old Precious Ugochi Okoro, a boarder at Ikenne Community High School, Ikenne, Ogun State, was reportedly attacked by cultists, while on her way to school in May 2014.
Thereafter, she was reportedly kidnapped and taken to Libya, where she said she was forced into prostitution before her release by the Police in Lagos.
Surprisingly, one of the alleged masterminds turned out to be her cousin, Kelvin Okorie, who was said to have been at the forefront of the search since Ugochi’s disappearance.
The suspect, alongside a trader at Alaba International Market, Ogbonna Njoku, were paraded before journalists yesterday at the command’s headquarters, Ikeja, by the command boss, Kayode Aderanti.
Asked why he did not disclose the whereabouts of Ugochi to her parents during the search, he claimed he was afraid of the consequences.
On his part, Ogbonna Njoku, a compact discs dealer at Alaba, claimed he was unaware that his elder brother, who left for Libya three years ago, was into such act over there.
He said all he did was in good faith, wishing that the hand of the clock could be turned back so he can act otherwise.
How I was tortured
Giving a chilling account of what transpired in Libya, Ugochi, who looked traumatized disclosed that she spent nine days on the road before reaching Libya and rested for three days before the reality of what lay ahead dawned on her.
She said: “I was taken to the connection house, where I saw over 1,000 naked Nigerian girls. I told them to put on their clothes that men were passing by. They laughed at me and called me a JJC.
“Later, the coordinator who we referred to as Madam, came and said I should undress and start work. When I refused, I was beaten to a state of coma, with my clothes torn into shreds. This torture continued for days until I succumbed by sleeping with men.
“I was told I had to raise the three thousand dollars used to bring me to Libya and another 3,000 Libya dinars for accommodation and feeding.
“But to my surprise, when I finished paying with the proceeds from prostitution, I was sold to a lady, who turned out to be my saviour. It was through her I contacted my mother.
Aderanti said after holding the teenager against her will, her abductors contacted her parents, using different telephone numbers and demanded for money, ranging from $30,000, N200,000 to N30,000 as ransom, which they directed should be paid into different account numbers.
He said: “I ordered a thorough and diligent investigation geared towards liberating the victim from her captors and arresting the masterminds of the plot.
“Numerous suspects were arrested but the breakthrough came when a decoy team of SARS, led by Abba Kyari, arrested one Kelvin Okorie, a cousin to the mother of the victim. Through him, contact was established with the gang’s member in Libya, which subsequently led to her safe return on Friday, April 24.
“Medical process were initiated at my directive to fully rehabilitate the victim and make her a valuable member of the society.”
He further disclosed that moves were on by the command to rescue other Nigerian teenagers, who were kidnapped and forced into prostitution in Libya, with the collaboration of Interpol.