A 46-year-old arms dealer, Godwin Chinyere, who allegedly sold most of the arms, ammunition and rocket launchers used by billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, alias Evans, has been arrested by operatives of the Inspector General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team, IRT.
Vanguard reports that Evans, who was arrested in June 2017 by the IRT, led by Deputy Commissioner of Police, Abba Kyari, and is currently standing trial at the Lagos State High Court, Igbosere, and Ikeja, was said to have mentioned Chinyere at the time of his arrest, as his major arms supplier.
Police sources disclosed that Evans confessed during his arrest that some of the rocket launchers and AK-47 rifles used by members of his gang were all supplied by Chinyere, who he said had contacts with arms dealers in Chad and Niger Republic.
The sources explained that operatives of the IRT launched a manhunt for Chinyere at the time, but stated that he went into hiding knowing that Evans would give out information about him. The source added that Chinyere came out of hiding recently when he felt that the Evans’ case had gone to court and the IRT operatives hunting for him may have channelled their energy to other cases of national importance. However, the source added, he was unaware that the hunt for him was still on. He was trailed to Asaba, Delta State, where he was apprehended. Chinyere, it was gathered, confessed selling five AK-47 rifles to Evans, when he was interviewed and that he began selling and making firearms in 1990 after he dropped out of primary school as his parents couldn’t afford his school fees. Confession Chinyere told Vanguard that he is a native of Obingwa area of Abia State and he learned how to make guns from his boss, one Chinaka Nnawakwo, who he said was killed by security operatives for gun running. His words:
“I learned how to make guns in a village known as Abala. I spent three years learning the job before I started making my own. I have several customers and gun-runners, coming to buy guns from me in large quantities. I usually sold locally-made double-barrelled guns for N10,000 and single-barrelled ones went for N6,000, while shotguns sold for N10,000. One of my customers, Samuel Nwakpa, who was coming from Kaduna State to buy guns from me, linked me to big arms dealers in Chad and Niger republic. They were the people who supplied me the five AK-47 rifles I sold to Evans, which he used for his bank robbery and kidnapping activities. I met Evans when he came to my village to treat his bullet wounds and his native doctor, Eyinaya Hearth, linked him to me. I knew he was using them for robbery and kidnapping. Evans paid me N1.7 million for the five AK-47 rifles, after they were supplied to me from Chad. The rifles were concealed in bags of fish and I took my commissions and gave the rest of the money to Nwakpa, who also supplied the rocket launchers to Evans. Before Evans was arrested, I had stopped doing the business, because I turned a new leaf. I went into hiding when he was arrested because I knew he was going to mention my name to the Police and I didn’t even know that the Police were still looking for me when I came out of hiding and was arrested. I warned Evans to stop kidnapping when I turned a new leaf, but he wouldn’t listen to me.”