“She took advantage of her gender to carry out espionage” – Police react to arrest of Gloria Okolie

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The police have officially reacted to the arrest and detention of 22-year-old Gloria Okolie in Imo State.

The police said she was arrested and detained in connection with the series of attacks on security formations and other critical national infrastructure in the South-East.

The Deputy Force Public Relations Officer (DFPRO), Mr Aremu Adeniran confirmed her arrest in a statement in Abuja on Sunday.

He said the police nabbed the suspect during a joint operation with the military and other security agencies.

According to the statement, Okolie spied for the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its military wing, Eastern Security Network (ESN).

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Adeniran said the suspect was arrested over her alleged “complicity in the series of deliberate and well coordinated attacks on national infrastructure and killing of security operatives in the South-East”.

A rights activist and Director General, Behind Bars Initiative, Harrison Gwamnishu had brought attention to Okolie’s travails in a Wednesday post on Facebook, disclosing that the lady was first arrested in June.

The police operatives that arrested and detained the suspect allegedly used her as a “maid”, making her cook and wash their clothes until she was taken to the police headquarters in Abuja.

Nigerians had taken to social media to castigate the police over the case.

The police spokesman however said the suspect was arrested following investigations and implementation of Operation Restore Peace.

He said the operation was to break the information, drugs and arms supply chain to the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its armed wing, the Eastern Security Network (ESN).

Adeniran said police investigations revealed that the suspect was a member of IPOB/ESN in Imo that worked closely with a male suspect believed to be one of the ESN commanders.

The DFPRO said the male suspect had earlier been declared wanted by the police for his alleged lead role in planning, coordination and execution of attacks on the police command and other national infrastructure.

He said the arrest of the female suspect and the revelations from her confession, assisted the police in the arrest of the male suspect.

“Further investigations by the police revealed that the female suspect took advantage of her gender and seemingly innocuous look to carry out espionage against security personnel on behalf of IPOB/ESN.

“The suspect also serves as an intermediate person, who receives cash, drugs and weapons on behalf of IPOB/ESN and deliver same to their commanders in their camps.

“Through her clandestine criminal activities, she actively aided and abetted the multiple acts of murder, arson and malicious damage to both private and public property by the ESN,” he said.

Adeniran said investigation into the case was being concluded to arraign the suspect in court for prosecution.

He said the Inspector General of Police (I-G), Mr Usman Baba has commended the security operatives for the unrelenting fight against violent crimes in the country.

Adeniran said the I-G also pledged the commitment of the police to improve public safety and security.

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