The Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, who disclosed this in a statement on Thursday said the suspects committed the crime on May 14, 2020, in Abuja.
He identified the three men as Johnson Emmanuel (38), Gideon Emmanuel (31), and Success Emmanuel (27), from Isiekenesi in Ideato Local Government Area of Imo State.
Mba explained that the suspects were apprehended by the police in their hometown where they had taken refuge to evade arrest.
“Investigation that led to the arrest of the suspects is sequel to complaints received from one Chinedu Ogbonnaya who alleged that his mother, Mrs Janet Nnenna Ogbonnaya, 55yrs, native of Ozuitem in Bende LGA of Abia State had been kidnapped and a five million naira ransom demanded before she could be released.
“A comprehensive and painstaking investigation by the police operatives resulted in the arrest of the three suspects, whom, in the course of interrogation, revealed that the victim had long been murdered and buried,” the statement read.
According to the police spokesman, further findings revealed that the victim, a widow, who had been a Facebook friend of the principal suspect – Johnson, was lured from her home in Gwagwalada to visit the suspect.
He said the suspect, thereafter, took advantage of the visit, served her yoghurt laced with drugs and subsequently had her murdered.
The suspect was said to have reached out to the victim’s family, using her phone to demand a ransom of five million naira as pre-condition for her release, after she had been killed and buried in a septic tank.
Mba revealed that the suspects led a team of investigators alongside pathologists to a residence at Wumba District in Abuja on Thursday where the victim’s decomposing body was exhumed from a septic tank.
He added that the exhumed body had been taken to the University Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada, Abuja for forensic examination.
The police spokesman noted that a Toyota Highlander belonging to the deceased was recovered by police operatives at a mechanic workshop in Apo where it had been repainted into a different colour.
He said the vehicle’s documents had been fraudulently changed and ownership of the car was transferred to the principal suspect.
“Investigations also revealed that the house where the deceased was killed and buried originally belonged to one of the suspects but was hurriedly sold-off to a third party apparently to obliterate evidence,” the statement added.
In his reaction, the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, commended the operatives of IRT for the arrest and gave an assurance that perpetrators of any form of crimes in the country would not go undetected and unpunished.
He also urged the people to be more security conscious and report any suspicious activities within their neighbourhood to the nearest police station.