When billionaire businessman, late Ignatius Odunukwe opened a real estate discussion with doctor Daniel Ibeaji late in 2019, the intention was to make it a profitable venture for both parties.
Little did Mr. Odunukwe know that the deal would have led to his death.
With the deal put at several millions of naira, both parties agreed to meet at a designated hotel in Lagos where all the paperwork were to be finalised.
The police immediately sprang into action and after three weeks of investigations, a shocking revelation was made.
A squad of killers was arrested by the zonal police and they confessed to murdering the businessman.
The four-man gang which includes Daniel Ibeaji, 42, Solomon Cletus, 30, Arinze Igwe, 26, and Israel Obigaremu, 35, also led security operatives to the location where they dumped the billionaire’s body.
According to the police, the suspects who were arrested in Abuja and Lagos were led by a medical practitioner.
I think I am a Monster
Daniel Ibeaji the kingpin of the four-man gang that killed Mr Ignatius Odunukwe said on Tuesday that the lust for money led him to commit the murder.
“I think I am a monster, I feel I am a monster,” Ibeaji said while confessing to the crime.
While speaking to newsmen during the parade of suspects at the Zone 2 Command, Onikan, in Lagos, Ibeaji, who claimed to be a medical doctor said, “Unnecessary lust for money and my greed for immaterial things clouded my judgement and made me commit the crime.
Revealing how he lured Odunukwe to his death, Ibeaji said that in 2019, he saw an advert for the sale of a property at Katampe, Abuja.
He added that he approached the security who linked him up with the deceased through his cell phone number.
“I told him I was interested in the property and I think he (the deceased) had a function in Abuja at that time so we were able to meet once in the city.
“We later met again at Atican Beach Resort, Ajah in Lagos State, on Dec. 1, 2019, where we discussed after which I murdered him with the help of two of my gang members,” Ibeaji said.
Ibeaji said that he met Cletus when he was remanded at Kuje Prison, Abuja and discussed the dealings with him which he promised to help out with.
“I lured Odunukwe into my hotel room through N900million business deal I was pretending to go along with.
“With the help of Igwe and Cletus, I was able to distract him and hit him on the head using the butt of an axe.
“After then, I injected him twice with shots from a lethal injection. His body was later cut into pieces and dumped somewhere at Ogombo Forest, in Ajah,” he said.
Cletus whom he met at the prison said that he was lured into the act with the promise of N2 million loan to be given to him if he would participate in the evil plan.
Ibeaji said that Igwe, who was a staff member of the resort was the one responsible for navigating the culprits’ successful exit from the hotel because of his knowledge of its layout.
A serial killer exposed
Speaking on the incident, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police, AIG Ahmed Iliyasu of Zone 2 Command, Onikan, told journalists during the parade that two similar incidents had been established against Ibeaji in the past.
“The first was in Bayelsa State, where one Depologa was murdered and his remains were found along the Abuja Expressway.
“The second is the case of Jude Efulue, a property developer in Abuja, whom he held captive in an apartment and forced him to sign a document transferring the ownership of the victim’s property to him.
“He almost killed Efulue but the intervention of Efulue’s neighbour led to Ibeaji’s apprehension by the police which landed him in Kuje Prison,” the AIG said.
Mr Iliyasu advised the public to be careful about what their social media posts, stressing that there is a sophisticated dimension that has been introduced into cybercrime.
He revealed that the only way to escape the predators online is to abstain from flaunting one’s achievements and wealth all over social media.
The police boss warned criminals to desist from their nefarious activities, noting that the Zone 2 Command which comprises of Lagos State and Ogun had no space for hoodlums to incubate and hibernate.
The AIG said that the suspects would be charged to court and made to face the full wrath of the law.
Mr Odunukwe was a renowned billionaire from Anambra who was into property development. He was also the owner of Fireman Generators.
The victim’s brother, Mr Tony Odunukwe said the family has accepted their fate. Describing the incident as unfortunate, the family spokesman said their only hope is to see the law take its full course.“Whatever the law says, what can we do?” he questioned.