The police in Imo State have arrested five suspected members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra over the alleged killing of a police sergeant, Joseph Nwaka, and snatching his AK-47 rifle.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Orlando Ikeokwu, in a statement on Saturday, said the suspects were arrested in the Isu Local Government Area of the state by the anti-kidnapping unit and other tactical teams of the command.

He also said that Nwaka’s service rifle and 15 rounds of live ammunition were recovered from the suspects.

Other items recovered were four locally fabricated weapons, six live cartridges and a large quantity of weeds suspected to be Indian hemp.

The PPRO said, “The crime prevention and control strategies adopted by the Imo Police Command under the leadership of Commissioner of Police, Abutu Yaro, to rid the state of activities of  the proscribed IPOB and other criminal elements are yielding positive results.

“On May 14, the CP deployed the anti-kidnapping unit and other tactical teams of the command to Amanato Isu LGA for the arrest of IPOB members but the hoodlums engaged them in a heavy gun duel. The operatives successfully repelled and dislodged them leading to the immediate arrest of five suspects while others escaped with possible gunshot wounds.

“Discreet investigation is in progress with a view to effecting further arrests after which the suspects will be charged.”