Operatives of the police units from the Lagos Police Command stormed Ayegbami Quarters, Imosan-Ijebu, Ogun State, on Tuesday, and arrested a herbalist allegedly behind Badoo attacks, Fatai Adebayo.
The team, which included men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Rapid Response Squad and Lagos State Task Force on Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit, was led by the state Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi.
Panic-stricken residents watched as the police laid siege to Adebayo’s shrine enclosed in a wooden structure.
According to the police, Badoo members usually meet at the shrine to swear an oath of secrecy before going on deadly operations in the Ikorodu area of Lagos.
Within the shrine, our correspondent observed ritual paraphernalia, including grinding stones, small gourds, rosaries, and bottles of different sizes housing ground substances.
Imohimi told journalists that one of the Badoo suspects arrested last week mentioned Adebayo as an accomplice and led the team to the shrine. He said the unnamed kingpin of the group had also been arrested.
He said, “Over the weekend, we had far-reaching achievements in the fight against these killers in Ikorodu, who some people call Badoo. The head of the group has been arrested. We arrested him on waterways as he was escaping. All the suspects are with us.
“One of them confessed that before they go for any killing, the head of the group would take them to the herbalist to swear an oath and get the stones they use for their killings. According to him, they don’t go for any killing without taking the oaths in the shrine. The herbalist is an accomplice.
“I can assure the people of Ikorodu and Lagosians at large that we will not rest until this evil is completely rooted out of Lagos State.”
However, Imohimi stopped reporters from interviewing Adebayo, saying it would be allowed during a press briefing on Thursday.
In a dramatic turn of events, the suspect flashed a smile as he was asked to hold one of the grinding stones recovered from the shrine.
He protested that he was not involved in ritual killings, saying, “I don’t understand English, but the stones are used for grinding peppers and herbs.”
His wife and mother burst into tears as the herbalist was taken away by the police