Okon disclosed this at a news briefing at the command’s headquarters, while speaking on the achievements so far recorded by the command since he assumed office in February.

The police boss, who took over from retired Assistant Inspector-General Police, Mr Chris Ezike, in the build up to the commencement of the general elections, was later swapped with his Ebonyi counterpart for the election duty.

He told newsmen that the conclusion of the polls threw up fresh security challenges in Abia with an upsurge in crime, especially armed robbery, kidnapping and car snatching, among others.

Okon said that jobless youths, who were engaged as political thugs during the polls, “now realised that there is no more job for them and have returned to the trenches.

Immediately after the polls, we swung into action because if we fail to do anything, the situation will escalate,” he said.

He said that the list of the command’s achievements included the rescue of Mrs Onyekaozuru Kalu, the mother of Nigeria’s international footballer, Samuel Kalu, who was kidnapped in Aba.

He said that the Inspector-General of Police Response Team and the Abayi Divisional surveillance team arrested the suspected leader of the gang, one Chibuike Sunday.

The police chief said that Sunday had confessed to the crime and other similar “kidnap exploits in Aba metropolis.”

He said that the command was making efforts to track down other members of the gang still at large.

He said that the command also arrested 23-year-old Emmanuel Nwachukwu, who stole a Toyota Camry, with registration number KTU 721 EJ, from a car wash in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun state.

Narrating the incident to newsmen, Nwachukwu said that the owner of the car, identified as one Oluwadare Akingbola, brought the car for washing on April 6.

He said that after washing it, he had the urge to abscond with the car, adding that he drove it down to Umuahia without any encumbrances.

He said that all the policemen he met at checkpoints enroute Umuahia simply “asked me questions on where I was going and allowed me to pass.

Nwachukwu said that few days after he got to Umuahia, he began to have a rethink over his action.

He said that he suddenly began to feel a strong need to return the car to the owner before he was arrested in Umuahia on April 10.

The police commissioner said that the matter would be transfered to Ijebu-Ode, where the offence was committed.

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He said that investigations had commenced on other criminal offences and that the suspects would be taken to court thereafter.

He gave assurance that “all the officers and men of the command will work with vigour and zeal to reduce crime and criminality in Abia to the lowest minimum.”.