The Rapid Response Squad unit of the Lagos Police Command has arrested 25-year-old Chinonso Michael said to be an Afro hip-hop singer and 22-year-old pianist, Chimelu Victory for robbery.
The suspects who were arrested last week Wednesday alongside 5 other suspects at their residence at 4, Modupe Young Thomas Estate in Ajah, said they were pushed into robbery due to the Coronavirus pandemic and hunger.
It was gathered that they had on April 10, 2020, ordered a pay on delivery iPhone 11 Pro Max valued at N450,000 from an online platform. After the delivery man identified as Anifowoshe Itunu arrived at a service apartment in Ajah, Chimelu who was the buyer generated a fake alert to the rider first and later, with the connivance of Chinonso escaped from the apartment after they had tied him down with a bottle of beer.
They sold the iPhone 11 Pro Max to a buyer in Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos, for the sum of N350,000 transferred into Chinoso’s bank account.
Upon sighting the police officers who were trying to effect their arrest, the suspects jumped off from the first floor of their apartment naked. Chinonso fractured his arm and bruised his chin immediately he landed on the ground floor. He then instantly took to the streets naked before he was arrested and taken to the hospital.
The suspects who confessed to the crime revealed that it was the third time they sold iPhone 11 Pro Max during the COVID-19 lockdown, adding that two of the phones were carted online with stolen credit cards.
They said they’ve been unable to make income since the clubs they played regularly at have been shut down due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The suspects said;
“During the lock down there was nothing going and we didn’t have anything to eat for like two – weeks.“We were already owing all the store owners in the neighbourhood. Nobody was ready to give us credit anymore. We had to device a means to survive the lock down.”
Chinonso who just changed his stage name from Authority to Happy-Boy, said he joined Chimelu who was his music teacher in Aba at his Ajah residence in March 2020.
Chimelu, popularly called Apostle Swag said he recently resigned as a Lekki church keyboardist to pursue a career in music. He further disclosed that “the plan of a service apartment was to create the impression that they live there in the mind of the despatch rider.”
One iPhone 11Pro Max, three laptops, two flash drives, two WiFi connection modems, two memory cards, four SIM cards, one Samsung phone and one iPhone were recovered from the suspects who admitted that they engage in internet fraud apart from their musical careers.
The Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit of the Lagos state police have taken over the case for further investigations and prosecution.