Military Arrests Arms Suppliers Of Notorious Zamfara Bandit Kingpin, Bello Turji


Bello Turji

Three suspected gunrunners supplying weapons to notorious bandit kingpin, Bello Turji, have been arrested by troops.

Addressing journalists in Abuja on Thursday, November 23, 2023, the Director, Defence Media Operations, Maj. Gen. Edward Buba, said the suspects were on their way to supply arms and ammunition to the bandit leader in Zamfara when they were arrested by troops.

The three suspects, whose identities were not disclosed by the military, were apprehended in Kaduna in the operations conducted between November 14 and 17, 2023.

The Defence Headquarters had on November 14, 2022, declared Turji and 18 others wanted and placed a bounty of N95m on them.

Regarded as one of the most dangerous bandit kingpins, Turji was reportedly involved in the alleged killing of about 200 people, including women and children, in January 2022.

He was also said to be behind the attack on Garki village in Sokoto, where over 80 people were murdered in a night in 2021.

“Between November 14 and 17 2023, troops in separate operations arrested three suspected arms dealers (names withheld)  in Zango Kataf and Kagarko LGAs of Kaduna State,” Buba stated.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that they were on their way to deliver ammunition to Bello Turji, who is a notorious terrorist leader in Zamfara State.

“Troops recovered 504 rounds of 7.62mm Special ammo, 100 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammo, three RPG chargers, three mobile phones, one ATM card and one vehicle.”

Buba also said troops discovered an Improvised Explosive Device with a letter in the Biu area of Borno.

“On  November 20, 2023, troops while on patrol discovered an IED with a hand-written letter in Biu LGA of Borno State. Analysis is ongoing

He said in total, 99  terrorists were killed while 198 of them were arrested across various theatres of operations.

“Troops also arrested 49 perpetrators of oil theft and rescued 139 kidnapped hostages. In the South-South, troops denied the oil theft of the estimated sum of N1,018,483,900.00 only.

“Troops in the Niger Delta area destroyed 245 dugout pits, 31 boats, 69 storage tanks, 23 vehicles, 162 cooking ovens, one pumping machine, three outboard engines, one tricycle, and 50 illegal refining sites.

“Troops recovered 578,900 litres of stolen crude oil, 454,330 litres of illegally refined AGO, and 10,000 litres of DPK.”

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