Two bus conductors, 22-year-old Lateef Sodiq and 21-year-old Tunde Lawal, have been nabbed by men of the Lagos State Command after robbing a motorist of his Honda saloon car.
The duo are members of a car-snatching gang operating in Lagos. According to the suspects, they “supplement” their work as bus conductors with robbery.
Sodiq told Punch that he was arrested in a bus by men of the Alakara Police Division, Lagos, who were already on his trail without his knowledge.
He said that on Wednesday, after concluding his bus conducting duty, he went to meet other members of his gang and they snatched the Honda at Sabo area of Yaba, Lagos and dumped the driver of the vehicle at Obanikoro along Ikorodu Road.
He said, “We did not beat the owner of the vehicle, we just asked him for the security codes of the car.
“This is the second time I would follow the gang to snatch a vehicle. I was given N50,000 the first time my gang took me along on an operation. Our leader is called Coded. He has not been caught since he ran way.
“I have been an armed robber for just one month. I came to Lagos from my state, Kwara, last year when I could no longer stand the farming business my father forced me into when he could no longer sponsor me to school.
“Now, I really feel bad about what I have done. I regret my life now. By the grace of God, if I am released, I will run back to my village immediately.”
Sodiq said he was not educated beyond primary school.
“When I finished primary six, my father did not have money for me to continue schooling,” he said.
Lawal on the other hand, explained that he thought robbery would be an easier job than his normal bus conducting work.
“My work as a bus conductor is a tough job. That’s why I decided to join the robbery gang. But now, I know better, the problem in robbery is worse. I wish I can just be released to go back to my conductor business,” he said.
Lawal explained that he was introduced to the gang by Sodiq.
According to him, the gang gave him the duty of ransacking any vehicle they snatched and gathering every valuable found in such vehicles.
“I don’t hold a gun, all I did was gather money, phones and other valuables,” he said.
The Oyo State indigene said he did not know other members of the gang except Sodiq.
He said the first operation he participated in, they were almost arrested when the police chased them but they escaped.
The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, has said efforts were being made to arrest other members of the gang.