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The Ghana Police Service have confirmed that the four missing girls in the Western regional capital Takoradi are dead.
The Ag. Inspector of General of Police, James Oppong Boanuh said at a press conference Monday, that the results of the DNA test on remains retrieved in Takoradi have been relayed to the families along with condolences.
A family member who spoke to JoyNews said, the results given to them shows the tests are positive.
The girls Priscilla Blessing Bentum, 21, Priscilla Mantebea Koranchie, 18; Ruth Love Quayson 18, and Ruth Abeka were victims of a kidnapping and murdering syndicate in the Takoradi area, the IGP said.
The police boss bemoaned the inability of the service obtain “accurate and actionable intelligence” in “good time”. But he said the arrest of the alleged kidnappers has “effectively” thwarted the ability of the syndicate to continue their murderous spree.
The main suspect, a 28-year old Nigerian, Samuel Udoetuk Wills was arrested in the Western region, John Orji was arrested at the Aflao border while a third, only known as Chika was arrested in Nigeria.
Sequence of kidnapping
July 29, 2018 – Ruth Abeka
August 15, 2018 – Priscilla Blessing Bentum, 21yrs
December 4, 2018 – Ruth Love Quayson 18yrs
December 21, 2018 – Priscilla Mantebea Koranchie, 18yrs
First suspect – Samuel Udoetuk Wills
It was the 28-year old Nigerian, Samuel Wills who was first arrested a day after the fourth kidnapping after the family had communicated with the alleged kidnappers and paid a ransom, the IGP said.
He was picked up at Kansawurodo, a suburb of Sekondi/Takoradi on December 22, 2018. But eight days later, he escaped from the Takoradi Central Police cell on December 30, 2018, at about 4:30 pm.
He used an implement to cut the iron rod for the ventilation in the cell and escaped, the Police have said.
The seven police officers on duty during the escape were directed by the police command in the region to reproduce the suspect within 10 days after residents accused the police of complicity. A demonstration loomed.
Samuel Wills was re-captured at Nkorful near Takoradi, five days after his escape.
On April 29, 2019, he sentenced to 18 months in prison by a Takoradi Magistrate court in the Western region.
Samuel Udoetuk Wills was found guilty of all three charges: escape from lawful custody, destroying public property and resisting lawful arrest.
Second suspect – John Orji
John Oji has been the name on the lips of the first suspect and also Nigerian, Samuel Udoetuk Wills, who has described him as the key to unravelling the kidnapping that has gained sustained national attention.
The 29-year old John Orji was arrested on June 4, 2019 at the Togo section of the Aflao border. He was arraigned at the Sekondi-Takoradi High Court II on Wednesday, June 12, for the offence of conspiracy to kidnap and kidnapping.
The police in their investigations also came across a Facebook conversation in coded language between the two suspects where they had had discussions about drugs that could be administered on the victims. There was also talk about blood sacrifice, the police said.
“On 6th June 2019, John Oji, in his investigation caution statement stated that he came from Nigeria to Takoradi in the first week of December 2018 to see Sam Udoetuk Wills, who is the first accused, upon invitations from him.
Oji admitted that he knew the two mobile numbers used to receive ransom from parents by Wills. That he used to communicate and WhatsApp Wills on same” the Chief State Attorney in the Takoradi kidnapping case, Patience Klinogo said.
But John Orji denied knowledge of any kidnapping. He said he came to Ghana collect monies which Samuel owed him after getting him a money ritual box from Tamale.
Third suspect – Chika
Police in Ghana were informed by Nigerian authorities on August 2, 2019, that a third suspect, Chika had been arrested in Abuja, Nigeria. Samuel Wills identified Chika via video chat and had a “confrontational exchange” with him insisting the third suspect knew the whereabout of the girls.
Samuel Wills said together with Chika and another woman Mama Soboma came to Ghana for the girls. The girls were sent to Nigeria at a place called ‘Baby factory’ at Anambra state, the IGP Oppong-Boanuh reported the main suspect’s claim.
The IGP said all the Nigerian leads given by the suspect grew “cold”. The police after examining the information so far later began a search on a property where the main suspect lived.