One-chance is not a crime, it is called hustling – Suspect

One of the six suspects of three different ‘one-chance’ robbery gangs arrested by the operatives of the Rapid Response Squad of the Lagos State Police Command on Sunday has lamented that the prevailing economic situation in the country has greatly affected their robbery operations

The suspect, Adeleke Rasaq, 24, was arrested along with his gang members, Lucky John (22) in Abule Egba, Agbado Oke Local Council Development Area (LCDA).

Adeleke, who resigned as a factory worker to join the robbery gang said, “We don’t make much money like before; the present economic condition in the country has greatly affected one chance business. We have not been able to make much money, everywhere is dry.”

“For some time now, we have been sharing N20,000, N30,000 and N40,000; unlike before, when I operate alone, I could make close to N150,000 daily. Now, business is dry.”

“I teamed up with Lucky because pick pocketing is not easy in Lagos anymore,” Adeleke said further. “When you toil alone, you might not make much. It has not been easy working independently lately. So, we had to team up to make more money to survive.

“Both of us live in Badagry. Every day, we comb Abule Egba, Agege, Fagba, Egbeda to operate. As soon as we made enough money, we would retire for the day,” the suspect stated.

“I resigned from the company I worked for when I noticed that a lot of my friends in Ajegunle, who were doing this kind of hustling were living better than some company chief executives. Every guy does this in Ajegunle. We don’t see it as a crime, it is called hustling.”

The suspect also stated that he started following them out until he mastered the art over a period of six years.

Members of the second gang, comprising Ubuke Michael (26) and Obinna Okoro (24), were arrested in Gbagada after their operational bus with registration number, FST 890 XM, had picked up two passengers who were going to Alaba International Market and Ladipo Spare Parts Market respectively to purchase goods.

Ubuke, the leader of the gang, had invited a bus driver and a conductor to join his one-chance gang. “I have so many commercial buses that I can call for operation. The driver and conductor do their normal work while we collect belongings of the passengers, drop them off and pass them to the driver to hold on.”

Ubuke also stated that one of their victims came out of a bank before boarding their bus while another had bulky pockets. We don’t normally carry more than two passengers during operations and whatever we make we share with the driver and the conductor but our share is normally more than theirs.

“We were about to collect their belongings when we were arrested. It is so unfortunate the driver and conductor of our operational danfo bus escaped”, he lamented.

One of their victims, Boniface Anusionwu, whose phone was found with the gang said, “I just came out of a bank where I went to withdraw some money for trading and for my rent. I never knew they were robbers.”

The last gang member, 25-years-old Steven Raphael and Samali Onafuwa (27) were arrested in Fagba and Station Bus Stop, Ishaga.

Confirming the incident, the Police PPRO, SP Dolapo Badmos said there would be no hiding place for criminals in Lagos State, adding that the suspects would be charged to court when investigations are completed. Sadly, all the suspects have roots in Ajegunle, she noted.

The six suspects have been transferred to SCID for further investigation.

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