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Man Confesses to Killing Retired Judge Uncle Over Property Dispute in Benue State

In a significant breakthrough, the alleged perpetrators behind the heinous murder of retired President of the Customary Court of Appeal, Justice Margaret Igbetar in Makurdi, Benue State, have reportedly confessed to their involvement in the crime. Justice Igbetar tragically lost her life when unidentified gunmen stormed her residence on August 24, 2023, located on Wantor Kwange Street, opposite the School of Medicine at Benue State University, Makurdi. Her decomposed remains were discovered several days later by her grieving relatives.

During a press conference held on Tuesday, Commissioner of Police, Batholomew Onyeka, revealed that a total of four suspects have been paraded in connection with the murder. Among them is the deceased’s nephew, Aondohemba Joseph, who allegedly masterminded the plot and enlisted the assistance of others in executing the gruesome act.

According to Commissioner Onyeka, the investigation led detectives to Adikpo in Kwande Local Government Area, where two additional suspects were apprehended. Identified as Igbazenda Gbidye, aged 63, and Dzungwenen Ukor, aged 40, these individuals reportedly confessed to their involvement after Joseph had informed them of a dispute over family property. Their sinister motive was to eliminate Justice Igbetar, allowing Joseph to gain control of the disputed assets.

The Commissioner further disclosed that one Akuhwa Barnabas, aged 32 and the deceased’s driver, also played a role in the crime by facilitating the gang’s access to the residence and manning the gate while the assassination took place.

Beyond this shocking case, Commissioner Onyeka outlined the broader efforts of the police force in the region. Over the span of three months, from July to September 2023, the police have arrested 85 suspects involved in various criminal activities, including kidnapping, culpable homicide, armed robbery, cultism, rape, and unlawful possession of firearms. Additionally, seven kidnapped victims were successfully rescued, and a cache of illegal weapons, comprising 12 locally made pistols, four AK47 rifles, four single/double barrel guns, along with 160 rounds of ammunition and four cartridges, was seized by law enforcement.


Ademola Adeyemi

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