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Ogun police arrest couple, another for killing popular hotelier

By Bukky Olajide, Abeokuta
25 November 2022   |   3:59 am
Operatives of Ogun State Police Command have arrested one Larry Adebayo Adewumi and his wife, Okereke Olufunmilayo with one Adebowale Sanni for alleged abduction and killing of Director of Rolak Hotel, Ijebu Ode, Otunba Abayomi Ajayi Smith.

Suspects

Operatives of Ogun State Police Command have arrested one Larry Adebayo Adewumi and his wife, Okereke Olufunmilayo with one Adebowale Sanni for alleged abduction and killing of Director of Rolak Hotel, Ijebu Ode, Otunba Abayomi Ajayi Smith.

Otunba Ajayi Smith was kidnapped on September 28, 2020 at about 7:30 a.m., at Anifowose Estate Igbeba, Ijebu Ode by gunmen.

On receiving the information about the kidnap, men of Anti-kidnapping unit were mobilised to commence investigation, but efforts to get the victim out of captivity proved abortive, despite the victim’s family paying N15 million ransom to the abductors.

Since then, police operatives have not relented in efforts to fish out those behind the act and the effort of the SP Taiwo Opadiran-led team yielded result in September, this year, when they got wind of plan by the hoodlums to strike again, this time, the wife and son of Otunba Ajayi Smith were their targets.

The team, having got the intelligence report, embarked on surveillance, consequence upon which one of them was traced to Ikeji Arakeji in Osun State, where the 55-year-old Adebowale Sanni was apprehended.

On interrogation, he confessed to have been on the trail of Yeye Olusola Roseline Ajayi, the wife of the late popular hotelier, Otunba Ajayi Smith,  to kidnap her, on the order of Larry Adebayo Adewumi,  the ring leader, whose wife Olufunmilayo happened to be an employee of Otunba Ajayi Smith.

He confessed further that it was Larry, who described the location of the victim’s hotel and his other business outfits to him with instruction that, if they succeeded in kidnapping the woman and her son, the two of them must be killed after collecting ransom, so as not to leave any trail, just as they did to her husband two years ago.

His confession led to the arrest of Larry’s wife, Olufunmilayo who was a manager at the victim’s building materials shop.

Larry himself was arrested three days after. He initially denied having anything to do with the kidnap of Otunba Abayomi Ajayi Smith, but when he came into confrontation with Adebowale Sanni, his accomplice, he knew immediately that the game was up, according to police report.

Preliminary investigation revealed that Larry who is an indigene of Ilesha, Osun State used to be a fraudster before he graduated into full-time kidnapping business.

His modus operandi, according to police was to scout for rich victims, after which he mobilised  his gang to go after them.

He got full information about Otunba Ajayi Smith through his wife, Olufunmilayo,  who was an employee of the deceased.

Further investigation revealed that Larry has two bank accounts where he used to keep money realised from his criminal activities.

In one of the accounts, with number 0010913206  domiciled in JAIZ Bank, the sum of  N34,953,455 was discovered, while he has the sum of N4,576,846 in another account with Access Bank.

A 2014 model Toyota Highlander was also recovered from him.

The Commissioner of Police,  Lanre Bankole, who commended his men for painstakingly following the suspects until they were arrested, directed that other members of the gang should be hunted and brought to book.

He also directed that the suspects be charged to court as soon as investigation is concluded.