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Nigeria: Teenager stages own kidnap to raise money for party

A 15-year-old boy in Nigeria’s city of Jos staged his own kidnap and demanded a ransom from his father for his release.

The teenager and four of his older friends have all been arrested by police in Jos and are all now in custody.

They had demanded a $1,365 (500,000 naira) ransom from the teenager’s father to spend on a school-leaving graduation party.

Police spokesman Terna Tyopev told the BBC that the entire kidnapping scene was “was expertly done.”

Tyopev said the boy’s friends pretended to be the kidnappers and contacted his father.

“They warned him the son had been taken far away from Jos and he should not report to security agencies. The father reported only after the threat became very serious”.

According to police, the teenager decided to stage the kidnapping after searching his family house for money for his graduation party.

Anger over cash

He was angered by the fact that he couldn’t find money despite his father just a few days earlier sold his car to raise money for the upkeep of family.

“The money had been paid into the father’s account, so it was not there,” Mr Tyopev told the BBC.

The alleged abduction was foiled when officers tracked down the phone number used to make the ransom calls to an apartment in the city.

Police said teenager and his friends were arrested in a building they were heard having a conversation in.

“The father felt very terrible at the discovery. His son had not asked him for money for the party beforehand,” Mr Tyopev said.

The execution of the kidnapping was carried out by the boy’s friends – who are aged between 18 and 22.

Police now say they are investigating if these younger Nigerians have executed such a plan in the past.

Nigeria continues to record numerous kidnapping cases involving both foreigners and locals.


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