The operatives of the Lagos State security outfit, the Rapid Response Squad, have arrested a 19-year-old National Diploma holder of Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, as the brain behind the blackmail of Queen Salawa Abeni with nude photographs.
The suspect, Olufowoke Emmanuel, a resident of Brentfield Avenue, Peace Estate, Magboro, Ogun State, was picked up by the decoy team of the RRS last Thursday after three days of monitoring him.
The Commissioner of Police, Mr Hakeem Odumosu, had in the wake of the attempt by an unknown individual to blackmail Alhaja Salawa Abeni sometime in April 2020, directed the Commander, RRS, DCP Olatunji Disu, to fish out the suspect.
After examining the complaint, the decoy team narrowed down on the suspect a few days later.
Sources close to the team disclosed that the suspect couldn’t be picked because of the prevalence of Covid 19.
The suspect in his statement to the police confessed to have been the mastermind behind the ploy to publish some nude pictures of Waka Queen exponent in exchange for money, adding that he was alone in the scheme.
The suspect, a 2017/2018 Electrical Engineering student of Yabatech, disclosed that he saw the nude pictures in a memory card which he picked up on the floor in Yabatech sometime in November 2019.
He added that after downloading the nude photographs of Salawa Abeni on his phone, he picked up her mobile phone number from the musician’s Instagram page.
He stated, “On 1st of April, 2020, I chatted her up and also called her after sending few of the photos to her online.
“My intention was to negotiate with her for few bucks and for me to destroy the photographs.
“I thought everything was going on fine until the following day when I heard the news of the blackmail over the radio. I was with my mother. She was even cursing the blackmailer unknown to her that I was the brain behind it.
“I immediately sneaked out, destroyed the memory card and threw my mobile phone and SIM card into nearby wetland in Magboro. Since then, I neither mentioned it to anyone nor called Madam Salawa Abeni about it again.”
Commenting on the arrest, Odumosu stated that no individual would be allowed to commit a crime in Lagos from any state or escape to other states in Nigeria to evade arrest.
He advised guardians to monitor their wards, emphasizing that the Internet is a fertile ground for opportunities but the state command would not allow criminals use it as an avenue to exploit law-abiding Lagosians.