A local AK-47 fabrication factory has been uncovered by the police high command in Jos South Local Government Area of Plateau State, it was learnt on Wednesday.
The Force Public Relations Officer, CP Frank Mba in Abuja paraded two middle aged men Joe Michael and Iliya Bulus arrested for the alleged fabrication of weapons alongside other 79 suspects.
The suspects according to Mba, were arrested by the operatives of the two major Units of operational and investigative team of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) and Special Tactical Squad (STS) of the Force across the country for various offences ranging from kidnapping, banditry, armed robbery, culpable homicide, gun running to illegal production and distribution of fake number plates.
Addressing reporters while parading the suspects, Mba expressed sadness that the locally fabricated guns are fast becoming the weapons of choice for criminals terrorizing the country and it portends a great danger to the security of the nation if not immediately curbed.
Mba lamented that the locally fabricated Ak-47 was a masterpiece which would require extra knowledge of an expert to differentiate from the ones made from Europe.
He disclosed that during the raid on the illegal factory 20 pieces of locally Ak-47 rifles were recovered by the operatives who had been on the trail of the suspects for a long time.
His words: If you look at these weapons locally fabricated by the suspects, there is no difference from others being imported into the country, unless you are trained you will not be able to spot the difference, they use the same magazines.
“We will follow up to track down those behind this, we will continue to deepen our intelligence, and we continue to work with other sister security agencies to check the proliferation of illegal arms in the country.
The fabricator, Joe Michael, who said he attended a Technical College in Jos, told reporters that he had so far fabricated about 180 Units in the last three year which he sold at N80, 000 per unit.
The suspect also claimed that he acquired the skill from his late boss simply known as James.
In a related development, Mba also paraded a three man gang over the alleged mass production and distribution of specialized fake number Plates comprising the Presidency, Diplomatic and others.
He explained that the suspects were apprehended in Ikorodu area of Lagos State by crack detectives of the Special Tactical Squad STS.
Mba said at the point of the arrest, 80 units of such fake number plates ready for collection were recovered from the suspects.