A local AK-47 fabrication factory has been uncovered by the police in Jos South Local Government Area of Plateau State.
Two suspects believed to be behind the factory were paraded.
Seventy nine others, suspected to be kidnappers, bandits, armed robbers, gun runners, and producers of fake number plates were also paraded by the police.
The police also yesterday said the killers of Mr. Christopher Dega, a retired Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG), who was Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom’s security adviser, traced him to a restaurant in Jos, Plateau State where he was killed.
The names of the weapon fabricators were given as Joe Michael and Iliya Bulus.
Force spokesman Frank Mba told reporters that the suspects were arrested by operatives of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT) and Special Tactical Squad (STS) in various places across the country.
Mba, a commissioner of Police, expressed concern that the locally-fabricated AK-47 was fast becoming the weapon of choice for criminals. He said the development portends a great danger to the security of the nation.
Mba described the Jos- fabricated Ak-47 as a masterpiece that would require extra knowledge of an expert to differentiate it from the ones made in Europe.
He said during the raid on the factory, 20 pieces of the gun were recovered by the operatives, who for a long time, were on the trail of the suspects.
The spokesman said: “If you look at these weapons locally-fabricated by the suspects, there is no difference from others imported. 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 continue to work with other sister security agencies to check the proliferation of illegal arms in the country.”
One of the fabricators, Michael, who 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 each.
The suspect also claimed that he acquired the skill from his late boss, whose name he gave simply as James.
Three of the 79 other suspects paraded for alleged mass production and distribution of special fake number plates like those of the Presidency and diplomatic missions.
Mba said the fake number plate makers were apprehended in Ikorodu, Lagos State, by STS detectives. Eighty units of such fake number plates were recovered from them..
The Force spokesman said investigations had shown that the syndicate was being patronised by people of shady characters.
“These shady characters get those specialised number Plates and fix them on their vehicles to beat security checks and to enjoy unmerited privileges in the society,” Mba added.