The life of a young man, Charles Bankole Orisanya from Akoko in Ondo State, who was working with Halliburton in Rivers State ended sadly and brutally on September 19, 2014 when his 26-year-old girlfriend, Loretta Odikagbo, snuffed life out of him. She was however apprehended almost three months after, precisely December 9, 2014 after a painstaking investigation by the Homicide Section of the Rivers State Police Command.
Senior police officers who investigated the case said that the method of killing was an uncommon one in Nigeria, as Miss Odikagbo, popularly called Loretta, and two accomplices allegedly tapered late Orisanya’s mouth, hands and legs before covering his head with a polythene bag. Loretta was said to have sat on the deceased’s head while one of the accomplices, Ime Francis Moses Jnr., held his neck until he became lifeless.
According to information gathered by Crime Reports, Loretta Odikagbo, a student of Rivers State Polytechnic, Bori, met Orisanya on Badoo network and they started dating online. They connected physically and the relationship blossomed over the next months. Along the line, Loretta fell out of love with her lover. And the reason she gave was that her lover boy was not fulfilling his promises. The deceased, who was in his early 30s, was a civil engineer and a staff of Halliburton Company at Trans-Amadi area of Port Harcourt, it was learnt.
On September 19, 2014, the lover invited the lady to his house but she did not come alone. Crime Reports learnt that she hired two men to go with her and hid them under the staircase of the lover’s residence.
In order not to arouse any suspicion, Loretta released herself totally to her lover and engaged in a passionate love making session with him. After the man climaxed, he rolled off and got ready for sleep. The lady was said to have quietly opened the door to let the two accomplices in. Pointing a gun-like object at Bankole, Loretta and the boys used a rope and masking tape to tie his hands and legs.
Satisfied that she had dealt with her lover, Loretta left for an Automated Teller Machine to collect all the cash in Bankole’s account. Of course, she had earlier collected the secret pin from him under duress. Not done, the lady was said to have returned and had gone to her lover’s kitchen to pick a polythene bag to cover his head after taping his mouth, and sat on his head. One of the accomplices, Moses, held the man’s neck until he gave up the ghost. The two men also took their victim’s shirts, shoes and other personal items while Loretta went for his LG phone and laptop.
When the case was reported at a police station, it was learnt that there was no single clue that could be used to trail the killers. But when the case was transferred to Department of Criminal Investigation, Rivers State Police Command, the crack detectives investigating the case were able to resolve the mystery as they worked on an item picked from the scene crime. This eventually led to Loretta’s arrest and, subsequently, Moses’, while the third suspect is still at large.
In an interview with Loretta, she claimed that she decided to deal with late Orisanya because he was not fulfilling all his promises to her. Her narration went thus: “I am from Rumuomasi, Obio/Akpor Local Government area of Rivers State. I was born on May 2, 1988. I hold a Diploma in Mass Communication and was to resume for my HND in January 2015 but I was arrested in December 2014.
“I asked a friend, Moses to help harass a man who was my boyfriend but is now deceased. I met Bankole (Orisanya) through a social network called Badoo in January 2014 and we got intimate online since he was at the rig offshore when we met. He was there for two months and we became internet lovers. We were chatting and exchanging pictures. When he came back, he invited me over and we started dating.
“The basis of it all was money. When I met him, it was all promises upon promises. Along the line, the sex was going on and the money was not coming. He would give me N10,000, N15,000 but that was not what I expected from him. Also when we first met, to me, he was a single man but along the line, I discovered he was married.
“We talked about it but he didn’t want the affair to end. He said that it would not be a problem and he could handle it. But I only continued with him because I was waiting for the promises to be fulfilled. I was not interested in marriage to him. We had a bit of misunderstanding concerning money and our relationship. I asked my friend who is also my in-law to help me so that I could get the money forcefully from Bankole.
“Along the line, I could not control my anger so I asked my in-law to come help harass him to get what I could get from him and move on with my life.
“On a particular night, he called me and I went to his place with my in-law and one other guy. I felt it was an opportunity to deal with him. We went to his residence and I managed to sneak the two men into the compound. I hid them under the stairs. I went in to Bankole and we made love. After we were done, I left him in the bedroom and went to the kitchen as if I wanted to drink water, and let the guys in. I made it look like both of us were being robbed. We met Bankole in the sitting room; probably trying to know what kept me away for long.
“There was no light. I didn’t see any gun. My in-law was holding a tape while the other guy held a torch and something that looked like a gun. Bankole and I went on our knees and the guys were threatening us, asking for money. My lover told them that he had money in his account so he gave them his ATM card pin number.
“My-in law tied his hands with the tape and second guy acted like I had to be the one to follow him to the ATM. It was raining heavily that night. It was almost midnight. We left for the ATM and I withdrew a little over N120,000 and paid the guy off. I gave him about N30,000 or thereabouts. My in-law came to meet me at the ATM and I also gave him almost N50,000.
“I took Bankole’s LG phone while his laptop was brought to me the following day by my in-law. I can’t remember what the other guy took from Bankole’s house. I didn’t know anything about the polythene that was used to cover his head.”
Loretta said she did not bother to go back to Orisanya’s house so did not know that he died. “I didn’t have the intention of dating him anymore; I just wanted to move on. I only knew about Bankole’s death when I was arrested.”
Moses (30), who said he hails from Akwa Ibom State, however gave a contrary narration to Loretta’s. According to him, “Loretta called me and said that she and her boyfriend were having some issues. She said he was owing her some money and had refused to ‘settle’ her. She said she would call me to go and harass him promising to notify me whenever he called her. Before then she gave me some money to buy a torchlight, which I did.
“On a day, she called me and came to meet me. We went to Rumuomasi to pick another guy called Winkoro. He refused being part of the plan and we left him. As we walked, we saw a boy whom I knew but don’t know his name. I introduced him to her and she explained her intention to him and he joined us.
“She took us to the man’s house and kept us under the staircase. Earlier, she gave the other guy a rope and masking tape and I was with a torch light and an iron object that looked like a gun. After a while, she called us in and we got into the kitchen. Minutes later, according to her instruction, we got into the room where she was with her boyfriend.
“I pointed the torch at the man and said: “Na you dey owe our sister and you no wan pay”. The lover boy pleaded that he was going to pay; that we should calm down. The guy with us tied the man’s legs with a rope and tapered his hands. Loretta stood up and slapped the man repeatedly. After that she asked the man of money but he said he had no money at home. He pointed at his ATM cards and gave Loretta the pin number.
“She and the other guy left for the ATM and I stayed with our victim. I later called her to confirm if the pin was right and she said yes. I asked if I should start coming but she asked me to wait at the man’s house. Before she left, she and the other guy packed some items like laptop, phone. When she came back, she went to the man’s room.
“She came out, went to the kitchen, brought a polythene bag and said that if I did not assist her in killing the man, if the bubble burst, I would be the first person she would mention. She covered the man’s head with the polythene bag and sat on his head while I assisted her in holding the man’s neck until he became motionless.
“Loretta gave me N28,000. I was arrested on December 10, 2014. She was the one who led the police to me. I took three shirts and a sandal from the man’s house. Taking the man’s life was not in the initial plan.”
On the relationship between them, Moses said that he and Loretta used to drink alcohol together while she was also a chain smoker. Loretta confirmed this and added that she used to smoke marijuana.
Moses also revealed that a case akin to the current one occurred three years ago. “Loretta had a man she was going out with. They had some problems and because Loretta had the man’s spare key, she gave it to me and asked me to go and pack the man’s things and her own too, so that it would look like robbery. The man got her arrested and I was also picked. We returned the things to the man,” Moses disclosed. Again, Loretta confirmed this and said that the man was a staff of Shell.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer in Rivers State, DSP Ahmad Muhammad, confirmed the story, saying that the case was still under investigation at the Department of Criminal Investigation.