Delta state judge, Justice Marcel Okoh who was kidnapped last week in Abraka, Ethiope East Local Government Area of the state was freed last night by his abductors.
Justice Okoh who was seized last Tuesday, August 7, by gunmen on his way to Warri where he was to resume as a vacation judge.
Justice Okoh was freed after he reportedly paid a ransom of N7million raised from family members and associates.
A family source said Justice Okoh was released at between 8 and 9pm Wednesday night near Asaba, the Delta state capital.
Last week lawyers as well as courts workers in Delta briefly embarked on a strike action to protest against the judge’s kidnapping.
Some lawyers in the state who worked in Mr. Okoh’s office while he was a public prosecutor engaged the kidnapers to negotiate his release
The Delta state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), DSP Charles Muka confirmed his freedom to journalists claiming that the police made several efforts to rescue the judge before his eventual release.
“The police made several efforts were made to rescue him and to track down the elusive armed gang preying on Deltans and Nigerians as a means of earning a living’, Mr. Mouka said.
He further stated that the Judge’s driver is in police custody.
“We have revealing information on the persons of these hoodlums and efforts are on to get them. The command has set strict measures in place to stop such tides. The command appreciates various agencies, vigilantes and stakeholders for collaborations and synergy.”
Delta State police command had few weeks ago thwarted an attempt by kidnappers to kidnap the State’s Head of Service, Mr. Okey Ofili.