The Department of State Security (DSS) has rescued Tawanda Jackson, an American citizen, who was allegedly held hostage by one Mathew Adedoyin, an acquaintance she met via social media.
Kayode Oyekanmi, deputy director, public affairs, Lagos state ministry of justice, disclosed this in a statement on Monday.
Parading the prime suspect and his accomplice at the DSS Lagos command, Betty Adoki, director of the command, said 46-year old Jackson who had arrived Lagos on November 11, was held hostage by the suspect.
According to her, the American embassy in Lagos had reported to the command about Jackson’s abduction and they immediately commenced investigation which culminated in the raid of the “criminal hideout” by a team of security operatives and military personnel of the 9 brigade, Nigeria army, Lagos.
Adoki said the suspect had lured the mother of five through social media, claiming to be a wealthy prince from Arogbatesu royal family of Ile-Ife, Osun state.
She was quoted as saying while on the dating site, Adedoyin (40-year old) reportedly lied to her that he was an exporter of ginger and bitter cola, with a large plantation of cocoa and palm oil.
“He said that his father was a former king of Ife Titun, Osun State and that he was heir apparent to the throne,” Adoki said.
“He further cajoled the victim that he owns several buildings in Lagos, including where Jackson was held hostage. But the victim started to suspect a foul play when he was losing patience and said he rented the place, meanwhile, it was a ramshackle place he said his father owned.”
She further said Adedoyin was discovered to have reserved Protea Hotel, Ikeja, as accommodation for the victim while in Nigeria, but deliberately moved her to another hotel in order to prevent the monitoring of Jackson by the embassy.
The suspect was said to have seized the victim’s international passport, credit card and United States identity card in order to prevent her possible escape.
The suspected abductors received the victim at Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja and promptly lodged her at Turn Up Hotel, Ipaja, for three days before moving her to “a prepared hideout” in Abule Egba.
“Consequently, on November 26, 2018 about 0200hours, Jackson, was rescued from the captivity of these criminal elements who are suspected to be internet fraudsters and kidnappers. Jackson was held hostage at No. 7, Akanbi Street, Abule Egba, Ifako-Ijaiye LGA, Lagos by one Mathew Adedoyin and his accomplice, Idowu Ayeni,” she said.
Adoki said investigation would be intensified after which the suspects would be prosecuted in line with relevant laws.
Speaking to journalists while being paraded, Adedoyin, who claimed to be an estate agent, denied abducting the victim.
He added that her coming down to Nigeria was on her own volition with the intention of getting married to him.
He was said to have admitted that on her arrival, he lodged her at Turn Up Hotel but had to move her to his friend’s house pending when he could raise money for her return ticket to the United States.
He also denied seizing the victim’s passport, saying that he only helped her keep it safe after he realised that she was carefree with her bag containing the documents anytime they went out.
His accomplice, Idowu Ayeni, said he was uncomfortable when the suspect brought the victim to his house but had no concrete plans on when they intended to leave.
Ayeni, who said he works as a litigation officer with a law firm, denied having anything to do with the suspect’s plans, adding that his involvement was allowing them squat for a few days in his abode.