By Isaac Shobayo-Jos
Men of the Special Task Force (STF) in Plateau State have killed two members of a syndicate who specialised in cattle rustling and arrested another two in a gun duel.
The STF, in a statement signed by its media officer, Captain Ikedichi, said 400 cattle were recovered from the fleeing rustlers on Wednesday and handed over to their owners in the presence of the chairman, Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association in Kanke Local Government Area of the state.
According to the statement, the cattle were rustled at Tuwan ward in Kanke and split into two groups, heading towards Langshi and Kwal, with a view to evading security operatives.
“On receipt of information, personnel of the STF engaged the rustlers in a hot pursuit and activated own cattle tracking mechanism, including blocking of all possible cattle movement route.
“The rustlers were eventually intercepted at Shiwer, where the shootout ensued,” the statement read.
In a related development, men of the STF have also recovered 1 G3 rifle with eight rounds of 7.62mm ammunition and one Barreta gun with 12 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition hidden under a mango tree while on routine patrol in Wase Local Government Area of the state.
The statement pointed out that the weapons and ammunition must have been abandoned by Tarok militias on sighting STF patrol in the area, adding that investigation was ongoing into this incident.
Other suspects had been transferred to the police and Department of State Security (DSS) for further investigation and prosecution.