Notrorious kidnapper EvansBy Oladipupo Mojeed
Former Super Eagles defender, Chikelue Iloenyosi, has revealed how his father, Pa James Iloenyosi, died in the kidnap den of notorious Billionaire kidnapper, George Dumeme Onwuamadike aka Evans.
Chikelue who described his family’s encounter with Evans and his gang as a twisted game of hide-and-seek said early on November 25, 2013, his father who was 86 at the time, had been on his way back from their local Catholic church when three SUVs double-crossed him and whisked him away.
The football star said that was the last day of his father’s live.
The ex-husband of Nollywood actress, Stephanie Okereke-Linus, said his father was taken away for five days without communication from the kidnappers.
“When they took him away, they did not talk to us until after five days. They phoned my twin sister. She was sobbing when she called me that the kidnappers had made contact.
“When we, the children, gathered, my sister called the kidnappers again and they simply told us that they would call back. They did not call back until after another five days just to build up anxiety.
50 million ransom
Iloenyosi said the kidnappers later reached out to his family demanding a ransom of N50 million, five days after the kidnap.
The family began to plead with the kidnappers for the reduction of the ransom, and after several days of this continued routine, the ransom was reduced to N15 million.
“When we paid the N15m, my father was already dead and we did not know. What made me upset was that despite how seriously we worked to get him back, my father did not come out of it alive.”
The former Çaykur Rizespor player revealed that after paying the ransom, the kidnappers refused to release Pa Iloenyosi, demanding more money from the family.
According to the reports, after a while, they never heard from the kidnappers again.
Punch reports that four months into the investigation, and the involvement of over a hundred policemen in Anambra State, the security agencies finally had a break when a member of the gang identified simply as Nonso, was arrested along with three others.
Chikelue said that Evans was already a popular criminal well known to the State Anti-Robbery Squad of the Anambra State Police Command, adding that he was a wanted robber known for hitting bullion vans.
“The SARS boss in Anambra told me at the time that any suspect arrested for any major crime always mentioned the name of Evans,” he said.
Chikelue also revealed that the family had to engage the services of a private investigator when there had been no news of their father’s whereabout months after paying the ransom.
He also said that a friend of his based in Isreal helped to track his father’s phone line, tracing it to a young lady, who said Nonso was her boyfriend.
“When we arrested the girl, she said Nonso only gave her the phone for safe-keeping, instructing her not to put it on. We started tracking Nonso. At a point, the current leader of the IRT, Abba Kyari, gave us 18 of his men to follow us to Cotonou, Benin Republic because our trace on Nonso’s line showed he was there.
“We got there and the police arrested a young man, who said he came to buy a car. He said the number was not his and that he only wanted to use it to call somebody in Nigeria. The police had to let him go when it was clear he knew nothing.
“Later, we left the Cotonou guy. Again, our private tracker traced Nonso to Lokoja, Kogi State,” he said.
Nonso was later arrested in Kogi in company of his girlfriend.
“I was in Lokoja for two months with a private tracker before we arrested Nonso. When we got to the hotel with the police that day, we requested for the list of the people staying at the hotel. The hotel staff mentioned a “small boy” with his girlfriend in one of the rooms.
“We knocked on the door and the girlfriend came out. He said her boyfriend was in the bathroom. But I was hearing a sound inside. He was trying to escape through the window but SARS operatives were already stationed around the hotel.
“He eventually came out and said his name was Emmanuel. But I knew it was him right away because we had been able to obtain his photograph ahead.
“When Nonso was arrested, he became submissive and pleaded for his life; saying he would provide any information the police needed.
“He immediately told us that his leader was Evans. But he said there was no way we could get Evans because he had fled to Lagos after the completion of the operation.
Chikelue said Evans line was called to pinpoint his location but it was all abortive. Nonso was later made to call another member of the gang called Awolowo to inform him that there was an operation.
“But Awolowo said he did not want to do any operation at the time because his wife had just put to bed. Nonso said Awolowo was part of Evans’ Asaba, Delta State group.”
According to him, Awolowo and two others who were later arrested by the police reportedly refused to give up any information despite being held for several days.
Due to Chikelue’s benevolent attitude to some prisoners in SARS cell, a prisoner gave him hint on how to get Awolowo to release information.
“He pulled me aside and said, ‘My brother, you are a good man because you always give money so that the police could buy us food when you come here’. He said he wanted to give me a privileged information.
“He said if we wanted any result, we should take Awolowo to the backyard and tell the police to shoot their gun in the air as if they had killed him. He said the other one would start confessing because they had indeed taken an oath of secrecy.
“When the police did this, Nonso started confessing when he was told Awolowo had been killed. He said he would take us to where my father was buried.
“We journeyed into the forest for three and half hours before we got to where they buried him. I broke down and my sister who was there at the time fainted.”
Late Pa Iloenyosi was buried around Nneyi village in Umueri community.